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FDA Sets Rules For Kids' Drugs

New federal regulations have been designed to make prescription drugs safer for children, reports CBS News Health Correspondent Dr. Emily Senay.

Until now, doctors could not get information on how new drugs might affect children for at least half of the medicines entering the market. Many medicines were tested only on adults.

New rules created by the Food and Drug Administration will change that. Drug manufacturers will now be required to study how new drugs affect children. They also are required to label the products so that doctors and parents know how the drug works in kids, how much to give them, and what potential side effects may occur.

In some cases, that will mean drug makers will have to think of alternative ways to administer a new drug. Since babies and toddlers can't swallow pills, drugs may have to be put into liquid, chewable, or injectable forms.

The government will ask drug manufacturers to study drugs already on the market where they suspect there may be higher risks for children.

Reported By Dr. Emily Senay

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