HEALTH

FTC fines NBTY regarding children’s vitamins claims

BY Michael Johnsen

WASHINGTON — As part of its ongoing efforts to stop “bogus” health claims, the Federal Trade Commission on Monday reached a settlement requiring NBTY to stop making false and unproven claims that their supplements promote healthy brain and eye development in children, the agency announced.

NBTY has agreed to pay $2.1 million to provide refunds to consumers who purchased certain multivitamins in its Disney and Marvel Heroes line.

The FTC charged NBTY with making deceptive claims about the amount of DHA — an omega-3 fatty acid — used in its line of Disney- and Marvel Heroes-licensed children’s multivitamin gummies and tablets. NBTY also made unsupported claims that a daily serving of the products promotes healthy brain and eye development in children, according to the FTC administrative complaint.

Product packaging and print ads promoting the vitamins had bold graphics highlighting that the products contained DHA, but in reality, the products allegedly had only a trace amount of DHA. While the vitamins’ packaging touted the purported health benefits of 100 mg of DHA, a daily serving of the Disney and Marvel multivitamins for children ages 4 years and older contained only one thousandth of that amount (0.1 mg or 100 mcg), according to the FTC’s complaint.

The FTC alleged that the packaging and ads for the Disney and Marvel multivitamins misrepresented that they contained a significant amount of DHA, and that NBTY and its subsidiaries, NatureSmart and Rexall Sundown, made unsubstantiated claims that the amount of DHA provided by the multivitamins promotes healthy brain and eye development in children.

The settlement bars NBTY from misrepresenting the amount of any ingredient contained in any product. NBTY also must be able to quantify claims that any ingredient, including DHA, promotes brain or eye health or provides any other health benefit, by “competent and reliable scientific evidence,” the FTC added.

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New Sanosil Halo Fogger disinfects rooms with ease

BY Michael Johnsen

PHILADELPHIA — Bresslergroup on Tuesday introduced a device that disinfects an entire room without labor or hazardous chemicals. Bresslergroup designed the new product for Sanosil International.

The Sanosil Halo Fogger transforms Sanosil nontoxic disinfectant into a fine mist of ionized particles and distributes it throughout a room, disinfecting every exposed surface, including the surfaces that regular cleaning can’t reach. The Halo Fogger assures a homogenous distribution of disinfectant on all surfaces, including high-touch areas, around doors, behind window treatments and even under desks, and is safe for use around all electronic equipment.

The portable, rolling device is similar in size to a carry-on suitcase. The Sanosil Halo Fogger disinfects areas at a cost of $1.50 per 1,000 sq. ft., Bresslergroup estimated.

Independent tests confirmed a 99.99% killing efficacy against such germs as Rhinovirus Type 37 (common cold), MRSA , H1N1, SARS, HIV-1, E. coli and salmonella, the company stated.

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Partnership for Prevention appoints new chief medical officer

BY Michael Johnsen

WASHINGTON — Partnership for Prevention on Tuesday named Jason Spangler the organization’s chief medical officer.

Spangler will work closely with Partnership’s Health Professionals Roundtable on Preventive Services, a group representing 1.5 million members from the leading primary care professional organizations. HPR collaborates on issues of common interest and concern in the delivery of clinical preventive services and also develops policy statements that advance preventive care recommendations.

Additionally, through Partnership’s advisory group the Aspirin Task Force, Spangler will be responsible for managing the organization’s efforts to increase the appropriate use of aspirin for the primary prevention of heart attacks and strokes. He will represent Partnership before governmental bodies, regulatory bodies and accrediting agencies, and will serve as an alternate delegate to the American Medical Association through the American College of Preventive Medicine.

Spangler also will be responsible for providing medical and public health expertise on Partnership’s program activities and policy development; carrying out the organization’s strategic plan, including its policy agenda; assuring Partnership’s adherence to medical and scientific principles; and contributing to the development of staff in the areas of preventive medicine and population health.

Spangler joined the partnership in 2007 as managing senior fellow and senior program officer. Prior to his tenure with Partnership, Spangler was with Pfizer Global Pharmaceuticals in its Public Health and Policy Group. He performed as public health lead on all clear health communication and health literacy initiatives and activities. He also managed relationships with health policy organizations and maintained and supported the group’s public health partnerships.

Spangler completed clinical training in internal medicine at the University of Pittsburgh. He also completed preventive medicine training at the Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions and Johns Hopkins School of Public Health, where he served as Chief Resident. Spangler presently is a fellow of the American College of Preventive Medicine. He is the recipient of the American College of Preventive Medicine Resident Award, the GlaxoSmithKline Preventive Medicine Residency Scholarship Award and the Outstanding Volunteer Services and Department of Medicine Thomas O’Toole Awards from the University of Pittsburgh.

Spangler received his Doctor of Medicine degree at the Pennsylvania State University College of Medicine, his Master of Public Health degree at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health and his Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Pennsylvania.

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