More than 50 health professionals signed a letter addressed to President Donald Trump, members of Congress and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) asking that we expressly permit personal prescription drug importation. The letter comes along the ever-swelling wave of patient and provider outrage against Congress’ and the president’s failure to act on drug prices, a result of the Big Pharma/U.S. politician relationship, which is only growing cozier.
The letter states:
“Our patients, who have purchased medications through the help of pharmacy storefronts or international online pharmacies verified by PharmacyChecker.com, have received safe and effective medications from legitimate pharmacies in Canada and several other countries. We respect that the FDA is charged with protecting our nation’s medicine supply from counterfeit and otherwise substandard drugs. However, there is no logical reason why the FDA should interfere with the delivery of safe and effective medications to our patients.”
These providers are unequivocally telling us that their patients are getting the right prescribed medication from international pharmacies, and that’s a big deal. Organized by Prescription Justice, the letter responds to actions by the FDA in September of 2017 against companies in Florida, often referred to as “storefronts,” that help mostly older Americans find lower priced medications internationally. The FDA notified those offices that importing drugs is illegal and those who help administer such drugs could face fines or jail time. In the case of the offices in Florida there was no dispensing or administering of medication to patients. The patients were ordering it for themselves with the help of people who are more familiar with the Internet.
As we wrote in November of last year, PharmacyChecker does not verify or evaluate the storefronts in Florida or elsewhere, but we were pleased to learn in Kaiser Health News that many of them look to PharmacyChecker’s verifications in advising their customers.
We verify online pharmacy credentials to identify those meeting good pharmacy practices and compare their prices so that patients can save money and not have to forgo needed medication. We do so by verifying that the pharmacies dispensing medications are licensed, require a prescription, and follow their local laws. Our standards and policies are public and we encourage healthcare providers to review them, comment and ask us questions. There are many facets to our verification process, which include inspections, website audits for transparency and truthfulness, product checks to make sure no controlled drugs are being marketed and sold into the U.S., and drug quantity verifications to ensure that the scope of the business is retail, not wholesale distribution.
For those who need reminding, these doctors, nurses and physician assistants know that PharmacyChecker helps Americans find genuine international online pharmacies and avoid rogue sites. With drug prices out of reach for millions, should we not all be helping patients find lower prices outside the U.S. from pharmacies that are reliable?
Read the entire letter and tell us your thoughts in the comments.Tagged with: Congress, doctors, FDA, Florida, healthcare providers, prescription justice, trump