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Illegal Online Pharmacies Becoming A Menace
A new era has opened with the Internet Pharmacy. More and more people are using the internet for health care. Some like the convenience and privacy of buying online. But some are reluctant to purchase over the web. Some find it still new and faceless medium. No counter to purchase from over and any familiar person or face to identify with.
As online pharmacies are booming and multiplying, counterfeit drugs are becoming an increasingly big problem. According to a report by World Health Organization, more than 10% of the global medicines market is currently counterfeit.
To ensure that the prescribed drugs are purchased from authentic and genuine online pharmacy, a voluntary organization was set up- the VIIPPS program. It is a voluntary certification program. The program helps the people to identify those online pharmacy practice sites that are appropriately licensed, are legitimately operating via the net and that have successfully completed a rigorous criteria review and inspection. This process will help ensure the pharmacies are selling only to those who need the drugs and are selling patients the real thing.
This has not been enough to curb the rising number of illegal online pharmacies but is a step forward to help the customers to identify the legal online pharmacy. Another step taken by the congress to curb the menace is a new bill, according to which a valid prescription will be required before the online pharmacies dispense prescription drugs to the patients. It would also subject noncompliant online pharmacies to criminal penalties and property seizures.
A lot still needs to be done in the area of certifying online pharmacies so that the customer can recognize which pharmacy is legitimate and which is not. Many online pharmacies which are operating illegally and are rapidly multiplying also serve as pipelines for narcotics, selling to drug abusers and other buyers who never visit a doctor or undergo any tests.
Prices are yet another factor which lures many customers especially those not covered under insurance plans or for medicines which are not covered under the insurance policies or for the elderly who want to save on money. This has helped mushrooming of much cheap pharmacy, discount pharmacy which is in different countries which may not meet the same pharmaceutical standards as the US.
Many prescription pharmacies give online prescriptions. Most regulatory authorities and professional organizations regard online prescribing to be unprofessional, in some states it is illegal, and unless it is done pursuant to a valid, ongoing patient prescribes relationship that has included an in-person physical examination.
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