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TIA SAYS FDA POSITION ON CELLULAR PHONES SHOULD REASSURE CONSUMERS

 WASHINGTON, Feb. 4 /PRNewswire/ -- The Telecommunications Industry Association (TIA) said that cellular phone users should be reassured by a Food and Drug Administration (FDA) position paper issued today that concludes that "there is no proof at this point that cellular phones can be harmful."
 TIA said that the "talk paper" issued today by the FDA essentially affirms the safety of cellular phones, while identifying the need for further research, to which the industry already has committed. The "talk paper" restated the position that the agency took at a congressional hearing earlier this week.
 "We have full confidence in the safety of cellular telephones," said Allen R. "Mike" Frischkorn, president of TIA, which represents the manufacturers of telecommunications equipment, including cellular phones. "We agree wholeheartedly with FDA's view that it is not necessary that people stop using their hand-held cellular phones.'
 "We know of no scientific evidence of adverse health effects associated with the use of cellular phones," Frischkorn added. "In fact, the FDA noted: If there is a risk -- and at this point we don't know if there is -- it is probably small.'
 "While FDA said in the talk paper that there are simple precautions that concerned consumers can take to avoid even potential risks, we see no scientific basis for any changes in how consumers are using cellular phones so long as they follow directions for proper use."
 Frischkorn said that TIA is requesting a meeting with FDA to discuss existing scientific studies supporting the safety of cellular phones. "So far, the FDA has not had the benefit of a comprehensive analysis by members of the scientific community of the safety of these products," he said.
 In its talk paper, FDA identified questions it has about a few of the scientific studies. "We believe we can address satisfactorily each and every question raised," Frischkorn said. "This is why we want to meet with FDA as promptly as possible."
 In addition, he added, TIA intends to actively participate in the mid-February meeting that FDA has announced it will have with the industry. The purpose of this meeting is to explore whether and to what extent future research may be warranted.
 "We intend to work cooperatively with FDA to resolve any questions about cellular phones and to maintain full consumer confidence in these products," Frischkorn said. "In the interim, we would remind consumers that there is no evidence from any quarter that the use of cellular phones poses a risk to users."
 TIA is a full-service trade organization with membership of nearly 500, including large and small companies, which provide materials, products, systems, distribution services and professional services to the United States and countries around the world. TIA represents the telecommunications industry in association with the Electronic Industries Association.
 -0- 2/4/93
 /CONTACT: Debra A. Colbert of the Telecommunications Industry Association, 202-457-4935/


CO: Telecommunications Industry Association; Food and Drug
 Administration ST: District of Columbia IN: TLS SU:


TW -- DC041 -- 3230 02/04/93 17:24 EST
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Date:Feb 4, 1993
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