John Horton, the founder of LegitScript, a company which seems bent on preventing Americans from ordering affordable medication from outside the U.S., recently attempted to discredit PharmacyChecker.com with a false and misleading blog post. This is an old tactic of Mr. Horton. Why does he do this? At least two reasons come to mind: PharmacyChecker.com publishes information that helps Americans find safe and affordable medication from licensed foreign pharmacies and we have publicly exposed Horton’s seemingly unethical business practices.
LegitScript is allied with large pharmaceutical companies and U.S. chain pharmacies, entrenched business interests that lose money when Americans buy less expensive prescription medication outside the U.S.
Mr. Horton’s recent blog post discussed charges against Titilayo Akintomide Akinyoyenu, a pharmacist in Washington D.C. From 2005 to 2010, Mr. Akinyoyenu is alleged to have filled orders from his pharmacy for controlled medications pursuant to prescriptions written by a licensed doctor that were invalid because they were based on online questionnaires rather than a face-to-face examination. His pharmacy was licensed in the District of Columbia and is registered with the Drug Enforcement Agency to sell controlled medicines. He operated an online pharmacy, apexonlinepharmacy.com,which was associated with his licensed pharmacy. PharmacyChecker.com verified the licenses and DEA registration of Mr. Akinyoyenu’s pharmacy, and checked that the online pharmacy required a valid prescription and met other good online pharmacy practice standards, permitting his online pharmacy to be approved in the PharmacyChecker.com Verification Program until August 31, 2010.
Despite the fact that apexonlinepharmacy.com is not a PharmacyChecker-approved online pharmacy and has not been for about five years, Mr. Horton saw an angle in the allegations against Mr. Akinyoyenu to take a shot at PharmacyChecker and give his blog post the false and misleading title “Another PharmacyChecker Approved Internet Pharmacy Gets Indicted.” The indictment is not of the pharmacy, but of Mr. Akenyoyenu himself and it makes no mention of PharmacyChecker. (more…)
Tagged with: apexonlinepharmacy.com, controlled substances, john horton, LegitScript, PharmacyChecker Verification Program, walgreens
Taking note that generic Oxycontin (oxycodone) is soon to be legally available for sale in Canada (See the Vancouver Sun); we remind Americans that reputable Canadian-based online pharmacies do not sell Oxycontin or other controlled prescription drugs to Americans. Oxycontin is a highly addictive narcotic, designated as a schedule II controlled pain medication in the U.S. When taken appropriately under a doctor’s supervision, Oxycontin can be very effective in the treatment of moderate to severe pain. Unfortunately, Oxycontin and other pain medications can easily be abused. Painkillers are responsible for 15,000 deaths annually, more than are attributed to heroin use and all other illegal drugs combined, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
As reported in the Wall Street Journal, the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy alerted U.S. border agents to be on the lookout for imports of generic Oxycontin. Under the Ryan Haight Online Pharmacy Consumer Protection Act only appropriately licensed U.S. online pharmacies can dispense schedule II controlled drugs. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s drug importation policy prioritizes the agency’s enforcement actions against illegal wholesale importers, but has generally permitted individual Americans to import small orders of non-controlled prescription drugs. Unlike regular prescription medication, the sale of controlled drugs, such as Oxycontin, Vicodin, Xanax, and Ambien, are regulated by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency not the FDA and subject to much stricter enforcement. PharmacyChecker.com evaluates and monitors non-U.S. online pharmacies in our program to make sure they do not sell controlled medications to Americans. See our Controlled Substances Policy.
Tagged with: controlled substances, Oxycontin, Reputable Online Pharmacies
Last week, Roger Bate, an economist and expert in counterfeit drugs with the American Enterprise Institute, wrote an article called “Google’s Ad Freedom Wrongly Curtailed.” Bate’s piece shows how banning safe foreign online pharmacies from advertising on Google and elsewhere is not only unethical but will lead to sub-optimal health outcomes. As we wrote at the end of August, the non-prosecution agreement between the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) and Google, in which the search engine was fined $500 million for allowing rouge Canadian sites to advertise controlled substances, is good because it forces Google to now block dangerous rogue online pharmacies from advertising. At the same time, however, it’s bad because it appears to prevent Google from allowing safe and affordable Canadian-based online pharmacies form advertising as well.
The DOJ/Google settlement appears to reflect the false rhetoric espoused by the U.S. government and pharmaceutical industry that only U.S. online pharmacies can be safe. Bate knows this is not true based on his own empirical studies, which found that properly credentialed non-U.S. online pharmacies sell genuine medication at a lower cost and require a prescription. By blocking safe Canadian pharmacies from advertising to Americans on Google, it is more difficult for needy Americans to find them. Bate writes:
Google’s current policy removes the potentially lethal sellers, but by disallowing credentialed foreign sites from advertising it will harm public health. The tens of millions of uninsured Americans who cannot afford their drugs will go online to circumvent this obstruction. If they are unaware of pharmacychecker.com’s credentialing, they will play Russian roulette and may end up buying a lethal product.
With media outlets and politicians inundated with a voracious pharmaceutical industry public relations assault that seeks to paint all non-U.S. online pharmacies as rogue, the victim here is the American seeking affordable medication online because he or she can’t afford it here at home. Bate wrote: “What is surprising is that independent groups, like Consumer Reports and AARP, have bought into this industry rhetoric or have failed to properly explain to their members that foreign doesn’t necessarily mean dangerous.” (more…)
Tagged with: AARP, adSense, advertising, AEI, American Enterprise Institute, Americans, Canada, Canadian pharmacies, Consumer Reports, controlled substances, Department of Justice, DOJ, Google, Online Pharmacies, pharmacychecker.com, Roger Bate, rogue pharmacies, safe pharmacies, United States