PharmacyChecker Blog

Helping Americans Get The Truth About Prescription Drug Savings
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Electronic Frontier Foundation Calls Out Alliance for Safe Online Pharmacies, NABP, Center for Safe Internet Pharmacies, and LegitScript for Internet Censorship

Americans Can't Afford It.

Americans Can’t Afford It.

Last week, an article was published by Jeremy Malcolm, senior global policy analyst for the Electronic Frontier Foundation, under the appropriate title, “How Big Pharma’s Shadow Regulation Censors the Internet.” Basically, Jeremy explains that due to drug company money and political influence in the United States, there are activities going on both in plain view and behind the scenes that are meant to curtail and even end access by Americans to lower cost medications being sold on the Internet.

I’ve been writing about this – albeit in less Internet policy, theoretical terms –  for years and testified before and warned Congress in 2013 on this issue. About a month ago, I published an article on Circle ID, a source of news and opinion about Internet policy and governance, describing the actions of drug companies to dominate the Internet. My hope was to reach people just like Jeremy Malcolm at organizations like the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF). EFF is a non-governmental organization, founded in 1990 to defend civil liberties in the digital world. They champion “user privacy, free expression, and innovation through impact litigation, policy analysis, grassroots activism, and technology development.” Read about its awesome work and history here(more…)

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Is Generic Viagra Legitimate? The New York Times Says…

buying generic Viagra online

Depends where you buy it online…

This question was posed in the New York Times Ask Well blog this week. We were pleased that PharmacyChecker.com was recommended as an information source for finding credentialed international online pharmacies that sell Pfizer’s brand name Viagra. On the other hand, we were frustrated that the Times answered this question wrongly by writing “In short, no.” Fact: Lawfully manufactured and distributed generic Viagra – sildenafil citrate – is available in Canada and at Canadian pharmacies. Just go to Health Canada’s drug database and you’ll find it – right here [Type in Sildenafil and hit search]. And it has been sold as a generic in Indian pharmacies, lawfully, for a very long time.

So the answer to the blog post’s question is – in fact – yes.

Prices? The price of a Pfizer branded Viagra 100mg pill in many U.S. pharmacies is $50, compared to $7-10 from many safe international online pharmacies. The generic pill sells for as little as a buck.   (more…)

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NABP’s VIPPS and PharmacyChecker Recommended by Board Certified Physician to Find Trustworthy Online Pharmacies

PharmacyChecker.com has been mentioned and recommended in many articles and news stories over the years, but it’s really gratifying when a medical professional/writer recommends us, even if they recommend the other guy first! Here’s why.

In an article published in VeryWell.com, called “How to Find an Online Pharmacy You Can Trust,” Michael Bihari, MD, writes: “Several organizations, including the National Association of Boards of Pharmacy (NABP) and PharmacyChecker, evaluate online drugstores for the quality of the services they provide. Both organizations reject the majority of Internet pharmacies.” [Emphasis added]. Indeed, according to sources cited by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), there are about 35,000 Internet pharmacies. The PharmacyChecker.com Verification Program has 75 and the NABP’s  program has 64 approved pharmacy websites. (more…)

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PharmacyChecker.com Updates Information about How to Avoid Rogue Online Pharmacies

Stay safe while shopping for affordable medications online

Stay safe while shopping for affordable medications online

Americans sometimes want to know if rogue online pharmacies, especially foreign ones, REALLY sell bad medication or if it’s just one big conspiracy by the evil pharmaceutical industry to scare Americans away from saving a lot of money. Well, as critical of big pharma’s efforts to scare consumers away from lower cost and safe medication as I have been, the answer is, REALLY, yes. The dangers of buying a fake or otherwise harmful medication online from a foreign or domestic source, or even a real medication when you are not under the supervision of your healthcare provider, are real and serious.

What we know better than most is that consumers, empowered with the right information, can pay a lot less for medication by shopping online, internationally, and also avoid rogue online pharmacies. The right online pharmacy can save a person’s life and their finances because it sells safe medication at much lower cost than a local pharmacy – but the wrong online pharmacy could kill you.

We’ve updated our website’s content about rogue online pharmacies to better inform consumers, healthcare providers, and regulators who want to avoid such sites and teach others how to do so as well. We do give a list of rogue online pharmacies but it is far from comprehensive. Other companies and organizations spend a lot of effort compiling lists and identifying rogue online pharmacy sites (with tens of thousands of websites, many defunct): PharmacyChecker.com is in the business of verifying and identifying the safest and most affordable online pharmacies, not listing the thousands of rogue ones.

As we explain in the updated section of our website, when looking to buy meds online, the best way to avoid a rogue online pharmacy is to stick with websites approved by PharmacyChecker.com and other noted certification and verification organizations, specifically the National Association of Boards of Pharmacies (NABP), LegitScript, and the Canadian International Pharmacy Association (CIPA). NABP’s VIPPS and LegitScript’s verification program validate safe and legal online pharmacies, but in a variety of ways wrongly conflate rogue sites with safe international online pharmacies, which can actually mislead consumers (see Rx Rights’ report on NABP and Techdirt’s description of LegitScript’s practices). That’s where the pharmaceutical industry conspiracy stuff comes in! CIPA’s online pharmacy standards are similar to, but not the same as, PharmacyChecker.com’s, and many of their members are also approved in our program – but we can’t vouch for those that are not. Regardless of the differences, all of us want to see consumers avoid dangerous drug-selling websites often referred to as rogue online pharmacies – and some of us also want to maximize your online access to safe and affordable medication!

Photo Credit: © Peterhermesfurian | Dreamstime.comPoison Pill Package Skull Photo

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How to Shut Down Dangerous Rogue Online Pharmacies without Curtailing Online Access to Safe and Affordable Medication

There are potentially tens of thousands of dangerous pharmacy websites, sometimes referred to as “rogue online pharmacies,” polluting the Internet and endangering the health of consumers worldwide. There are a much smaller group of safe domestic online pharmacies. Then there are an even smaller group of safe international online pharmacies, ones that we have verified, that sell many medications at much lower cost. However, when Americans purchase from these international online pharmacies (often because they can’t afford medication domestically) and import safe and effective medications, they are under most circumstances violating U.S. laws, which poses a quandary for regulators, public health officials, and even some people working over at Big Pharma. What’s right and wrong? How do we get rid of the rogues without overreaching and endangering public health by stopping Americans from obtaining safe medication internationally over the Internet?

In our continuing quest to get the truth out and for our elected leaders in Congress to take bold action to protect online access to safe and affordable medication, we’re publishing the next section of our report called Online Pharmacies, Personal Drug Importation, and Public Health

(more…)

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