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Partnership for Safe Medicines Supports Stronger Online Pharmacy Regulation

Consumer protection group urges Congress to safety issues associated with online drug sales.

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June 25, 2008 (FPRC) -- WASHINGTON (June 25, 2008) – The Partnership for Safe Medicines, a group of organizations and individuals dedicated to protect consumers from counterfeit medicines, issued the following statement regarding yesterday's House Judiciary Subcommittee on Crime, Terrorism, and Homeland Security hearing on “Online Pharmacies and the Problem of Internet Drug Abuse” and the proposed “Ryan Haight Online Pharmacy Consumer Protection Act of 2008” (H.R. 6353 and S. 980).

“The Partnership for Safe Medicines commends the members of this subcommittee and Representatives Stupak, Smith and Bono Mack for addressing a major safety issue associated with online drug access—the sale of controlled substances over the Internet without a valid prescription.

“Unfortunately, mandating prescriptions for drugs purchased online will not be enough to stop this public health threat. Internet drug peddlers will simply bridge the gap by creating and selling fake prescriptions. Rogue online drug sellers enable drug abusers to purchase their drug of choice and endanger consumers by passing off counterfeit medications.

“One of the Partnership’s core principles for drugs safety is that we must regulate online pharmacies. We value the rigorous oversight and standards that govern traditional pharmacies in the United States and believe all online drug sellers should be held to the same standards. We advocate that no one should be able to purchase any type of prescription drug, not just controlled substances, over the Internet without a valid prescription. That is why we endorse the Verified Internet Pharmacy Practice Site accreditation program (VIPPS.info) created by the National Association of Boards of Pharmacy. All Internet drug vendors, regardless of which state or country they are based in, must comply with the pharmaceutical licensing and survey requirements for every state they send pharmaceuticals.

“Unscrupulous online businesses will continue to sell whatever to whomever, as long as they are paid. If we truly want to avoid another deadly incident of failed Internet drug safety, we urge Congress to take this opportunity to further address the vulnerabilities threatening the safety of our prescription drugs. To learn more about how we can protect our supply chain, regulate online pharmacies, fight counterfeit drugs and other principles of drug safety, please visit SafeMedicines.org.”

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About the Partnerships for Safe Medicines
The Partnership for Safe Medicines is a group of organizations and individuals that have policies, procedures, or programs to protect consumers from counterfeit or contraband medicines. To join us in our stand against counterfeit drugs or obtain your own copy of the Principles for Drug Safety doctrine, please visit www.SafeMedicines.org.


Send an email to Deborah J. Danuser of Partnership for Safe Medicines
202-742-5256



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