With the cost of healthcare in the US predicted to rise 19.7%, it is no wonder that mail order pharmacies are increasing in popularity. Sadly, not all of these digital dispensers are created equally. This has damaged the industry’s reputation, leading some people to assume that legitimate online pharmacies do not exist or that they are unsafe in the administering of medicine – this is simply untrue.
Like physical stores, mail order pharmacies are scrutinized by strict quality standards. They should only stock medicine sourced from regulated manufacturers and distributors, licensed by the relevant authorities.
But how do you know if an international online pharmacy is legitimate and safe? Here are five ways to determine whether you can trust an online drugstore:
1. Understand how legitimate online pharmacies work
Medication should only be taken under the supervision of a health professional. At Medix, for example, our physical premises and pharmacists are regulated by the General Pharmaceutical Council. They are qualified to handle the medicine administered and ensure everything we dispense is suitable for your consumption.
A prescription is essential for certain medication, so you should always be wary of websites offering a way around. Unregistered mail order pharmacies put you in danger of buying products that are out-of-date, diluted or fake.
If a prescription is required, legitimate online pharmacies will expect you to provide one written by a licensed physician whose care you are under. There should also be a limit on the amount of medication you can purchase at one time. For instance, you are able to purchase a maximum three-month supply from Medix for personal use.
Once the necessary documentation has been approved, an online drugstore will then distribute the medication as advertised, in line with their own specific shipping and returns policy.
2. Check the partners of any online drugstore
Legitimate online pharmacies will already be working with reputable partners. As such, when shopping around, it is worth checking who pharmacies operate alongside, so you can feel confident in using their services.
As Medix Pharmacy is based in the UK, we are a member of the Royal Pharmaceutical Society and the National Pharmacy Association. These bodies are a testament to our credibility. The partnerships also allow us to reduce medical costs through legitimate means, such as parallel imports.
Parallel imported medicines are medical products that have been moved through EU member states. Under EU regulations, pharmacies can freely move products from one state to another. As pharmaceutical companies set different prices across Europe, consumers can access better prices through medication that has been parallel imported.
Medix operates under the highest levels of safety and quality standards. We realise that not all medications may be available in the UK, that is why we have chosen pharmacy partners in Canada and Australia, which operate to our exacting standards and are able to make the supply of the products we are not able to fill from the UK.
3. Ensure they are authorized to sell prescription drugs online legally
As touched upon above, there are easy ways to check that the mail order pharmacy you are purchasing from is above-board. The most obvious one for pharmacies based within the UK is the MHRA logo. It features on all legitimate EU online pharmacies and, by clicking it, you will be taken to that pharmacy’s registered page. At Medix, you can find our MHRA approved credentials at the bottom of every page.
Fortunately, the Falsified Medicines Directive (FMD) is being introduced in February 2019. This EU-wide legislation will help prevent counterfeit prescription medicines entering the pharmaceutical supply chain. All medicine packs will be tamper-proof and will feature a 2D barcode that contains a unique serial number as a product code. This legislation is designed to reduce the number of counterfeits in the global medicine market, a figure that currently sits at 15%.
As Medix is based in the UK and bound to EU legislation, our medication is scrutinized to a far higher standard than our overseas competition. If you are concerned about purchasing prescription drugs online legally and safely, make yourself familiar with mail order pharmacies that are under FMD legislation.
4. Know the difference between local pharmacies and the best online pharmacies
There are many reasons why people choose an online drugstore over a physical store. One is that mail order pharmacy prices are considerably lower. Through international relationships and parallel imports, we are able to keep medication affordable for those who need it most. Pharmacies located near you have unyielding supply chains and as such cannot usually offer the same savings.
Another reason is privacy. You are able to order medication in the security of your own home. It can be uncomfortable having to travel to your nearest chemist in order to treat an affliction that has debilitated your confidence and desire to venture outside. Our service means that you are free to medicate yourself through legitimate means and can recover comfortably in your own environment.
Lastly, we understand that you have an inflexible schedule. For those who have difficult work commitments or family responsibilities, taking the time out to visit the doctor and then the pharmacy is a huge ask. Especially if this is a frequent requirement for your prescription. However, at Medix, we provide you with a three-month supply of your medication, direct to your door.
5. Do they offer constant support?
You should not purchase medication from a mail order pharmacy that offers little means of communication. It is imperative that you have various channels to enquire about your prescription and get advice on administering it.
Before purchasing from an online drugstore, take a look at their contact details. Do they have an international phone number, so you are not excessively charged for any calls? Is support available 24-hours a day, 7 days a week? It is irresponsible to promise health solutions to any market without the guarantee that patients are able to request information in cases of emergency.
Medix Pharmacy offers a variety of ways to get in touch, including four numbers, a direct email address and a contact form. With us, you can feel confident in the knowledge that we take your safety, health and wellbeing just as seriously as your local pharmacy.
If you would be interested in speaking to one of our highly-qualified pharmacists, please contact 1-866-500-6633 today.
Ready to purchase your medication now?