Online Pharmacy Starts "Safe Shopper" Initiative

Published Online: Monday, December 1, 2003 has launched a public awareness campaign, "Safe Shopper," alerting consumers about the dangers of buying medications from illegal Internet sites that specialize in selling painkillers and other dangerous substances. The Bellevue (Wash)?based company also will work with the National Association of Boards of Pharmacy 'to close the door on illegal online pharmacies."

    "The Internet is a great tool to help consumers manage their health,? said Peter Neupert, chairman of Drugstore. com. ?Unfortunately, there are a growing number of unscrupulous businesses using the Internet to deceive the public?many times without a doctor?s prescription."

    The campaign comes as legitimate online pharmacies are working to distinguish themselves from the increasing number of domestic and offshore Web sites that inundate people with e-mails and advertisements for controlled substances. In fact, many of the offshore sites sell dangerous drugs without prescriptions. Other illegal pharmacies work with intermediaries who link customers with physicians who authorize prescriptions after only brief telephone consultations. In an effort to educate the public, has issued guidelines on how to differentiate lawful and unlawful online pharmacies:

  • Avoid online pharmacies that do not list their addresses, do not require consumers to visit their local physician?s office to get a prescription, or do not carry a full line of prescriptions

  • Do not buy medications from unlicensed Web sites that bombard consumers with unsolicited e-mail advertisements

  • Look for the pharmacy association?s seal of certification

Latest Articles
Donnie Calhoun, RPh, PD, National Community Pharmacists Association (NCPA) Foundation vice president, discusses how pharmacists can prepare themselves and their business before, during, and after a disaster.
Ken Whittemore Jr, Surescript's senior vice president of professional and regulatory affairs, talks about some new transactions available that can help pharmacists.
In case you got caught up in the Thanksgiving holiday rush, here are the top trending stories you may have missed in November:
Bryan Ziegler, PharmD, executive director of Kennedy Pharmacy Innovation Center, provides some resources for community pharmacists to use when implementing new collaborative services with primary care providers.
Latest Issues