With the massive campaign of pop-up advertisements appearing all over the World Wide Web and e-mail advertisements that flood your mailbox, it’s pretty difficult not to take notice of the increasing number of pharmacies over the Internet. Having the promise of convenience and cost-effectiveness, a lot of people in need of medications benefit from these sites. However, having said that there are a lot of Internet pharmacies, it becomes a problem discerning which ones are legitimate and which ones are fake. How can a consumer find the best place to buy drugs online?
Here are some tips to distinguish a legal Internet pharmacy from fraudulent ones:
1.Check your local pharmacy board.
Local, land-based pharmacies are inspected thoroughly and are required to meet certain standards before they are allowed to operate and sell medicine to the public. The same goes with online drugstores. The National Association of Board of Pharmacy requires its applicants to meet certain requirements before they are certified as a Verified Internet Pharmacy Practice Site or VIPPS. Your local pharmacy board should have a list of the different Internet pharmacies that have met the state’s local standards and have been certified. You should also be able to check which online pharmacies are allowed to dispense prescription medications to your state.
2.Buy only from online pharmacies that ask for valid prescription when needed.
As with buying from a local pharmacy where a valid prescription is necessary to obtain prescription medication, the same rule applies to purchasing prescription medications over the Internet. This is also one way of telling that the online drugstore you’re buying from is following the rules created for VIPPS.
3.Buy only from Internet drugstores that have a licensed pharmacist to assist you.
The service of a duly licensed pharmacist ensures you that someone will be able to properly address your questions regarding medications that you’re ordering from their website.
4.Beware of ridiculously low-priced medications.
It is true that different websites market drugs at slightly different prices, and at times, discounts may be given for bulk orders on drugs. But quality medications come at a standard price. An unusually cheaply priced medication may be a clear indication of counterfeit drugs. You may receive medications that have already expired; get drugs that have a higher or lower dose than what you require; or be given medicine that has a hidden component which may cause an undesirable drug interaction or allergic reaction to your body.
5.Look for online pharmacies that have an easy-to-understand privacy and security policy.
This is to ensure that your chosen Internet pharmacy has safeguard policies to protect you and the information you’ve submitted to their website.
6.Never submit information without doing a background check on the online pharmacy.
This is the most important thing that you must remember. There are hoax online drugstores out there and everybody is a target. It is best not to put yourself at risk of identity theft or credit card fraud by not giving out your private information to a website without checking out its credibility.