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FDA Proposes First Regulations on the Health-Related Mobile Application Industry

With the rise of the health-related mobile application market, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) proposed its first-ever regulations on the industry. The regulations target three types of applications that require the FDA’s approval: an application that acts as an accessory to a regulated medical device, turns the mobile technology into a regulated medical device or makes recommendations pertaining to a patient’s treatment or diagnosis. The FDA believes that just because a medical device is used with a cellular phone, it should still face the same regulations as its traditional non-mobile counterpart.

The FDA plans to collect feedback over a 90 day period from manufacturers and other health care providers, and until this happens the regulations will not take effect. According to the Washington Post, some concerns have already surfaced in regards to the proposed regulations, such as the FDA’s ability to monitor the technology when the mobile industry faces such rapid changes. Another concern is the willingness of investors and companies to back these products when facing this sort of regulatory uncertainty. Jeff Shuren, director for the FDA’s Center for Devices and Radiological Health, said that the FDA will likely take a more subtle approach in reviewing the mobile applications due to the speeding change of the industry, such as focusing on the design of the product and eliminating the requirement of clinical trials.

If you have any questions relating to mobile application compliance with FDA regulations or any other compliance issues, please contact a Wachler & Associates attorney at 248-544-0888.

Washington Post article: http://www.washingtonpost.com/business/capitalbusiness/fda-moves-to-regulate-mobile-health-applications/2011/07/18/gIQApwLdNI_story.html