If you’ve ever considered purchasing a prescription from an online drugstore, you’re among many. In recent years, the world of pharmaceuticals has evolved immensely.
You can save a substantial amount of money by purchasing online. That’s especially true if you take multiple medications; you’re able to buy in bulk and save on transportation.
But, as with all purchases on the web, you have to do your research. Not every online pharmacy is as credible as it may seem, so you have to know what to look for.
With that being said, we’re here to help. Here’s what you need to know before going online to purchase medication.
The Basics of an Online Drugstore
As with a Rite Aid or CVS Pharmacy, not all insurance plans are covered by an online drugstore. When you’re in the early stages of your research, you should consider this greatly.
Make sure you’re looking at each drugstores’ coverage. Also, you need to review and understand all policies and ask questions if you don’t. You don’t want any surprises from your insurance company later down the road.
A lot of people think that the Internet is where to go if you can’t get a prescription. But, if you don’t have one, no reputable store will allow you to purchase. (Read more on this below.)
Also, you need to figure out how the company accepts prescriptions. Do you have to mail it in or send it through fax? Are you, the consumer, able to send your own prescription in? Or, must it come from a doctor?
There are some online pharmacies that allow a doctor to request a prescription for their patients. But, that is something you’d need to square away with your physician beforehand.
What You Need to Look For
Now that you know the essentials, let’s talk about what to look for in a credible company. As we mentioned before, there will be frauds that pose as innocent sellers.
So, you have to be diligent and also cautious in your search. It not only could be illegal to purchase from a certain seller, it could be dangerous.
Licensed in Country of Operation
There are some absolute must-haves that your online drugstore should have. For instance, they need to be licensed in the country they operate in.
You should visit the Food and Drug Administration’s licensing database. This will allow you to search by state to determine if a company checks out.
If you plan to purchase from a foreign country, that can be okay, too. You just need to look into a similar system as the FDA’s to ensure they too have met the qualifications.
For example, let’s say you’re looking to purchase from a Canadian online pharmacy. You could go to the Certified Canadian International Pharmacy (CIPA) website. They also can help patients that are in the United States, as well.
Requires Your Doctor’s Prescription
Under no circumstances should you go with a company that doesn’t ask for a doctor’s approval. They need proof of your condition to ensure your medication isn’t falling into the wrong hands.
They should ask for a copy of the physician’s original prescription. It needs to be written and signed by the appropriate parties, as well.
If a company offers to sell to you without a prescription, they could be facing legal trouble. It’s also risky to buy medication that you may not need.
Has a Licensed Pharmacist On-Site
Don’t just trust an unknown face behind the screen. You need to go with a company that has support staff to review orders and ensure the patient’s credibility. An online drugstore that doesn’t have this procedure is probably sketchy.
You should be able to tell from their site if they have a licensed pharmacist to speak with. For instance, Canadian Pharmacy King has this spelled out nicely for its customers right on it’s “About” page.
These physicians should be able to have a phone consultation with patients. Before making an order, you should speak with one to review your condition.
Protects Your Privacy
As a patient, one of your primary concerns should be your privacy. Since you’re looking to purchase online, these two can often be compromised.
So, to avoid this, make sure you directly ask the support staff what their processes are. Be direct that your confidentiality is of utmost importance to you and ask how they will keep it safe.
Look For an Address and Phone Number
Your online drugstore shouldn’t just be some shady dealer selling prescriptions out of his or her basement. It should be a real store with a physical location.
When you’re on their site, see if they have a legitimate street and mailing address. Look into that address and see if it’s actually a business, or if it seems phony.
Also, see what telephone number they offer. If they’re not legal (or safe), it’s likely they won’t even have a number listed. Even if they do, give it a call and get a feeler for the people at the other end.
Let’s Wrap This Up
Thanks to the great web, our lives can be simpler than ever. We don’t have to leave our homes to have a good work out, grocery shop, and now buy prescriptions.
Now that you know what to look for and what to avoid, you can find a safe online drugstore. If you’re looking for more information into the world of technology and business, you’re in the right place!
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