Why to buy medicine online?
Apart from price discounts and the comfort of shopping from home, people also buy medicines such as aphrodisiacs and benzodiazepines (medicines to treat insomnia and anxiety), out of their desire for privacy. And for those living in remote areas and consumers who are short of time and for whom reaching the pharmacy is difficult, ordering online has obvious advantage.
If the same medicine is available at lesser price online through medicine app, then customers will buy it online rather than going to a pharmacist.
Risks and Concerns:
Illegal or unethical online pharmacies sometimes send outdated, counterfeit medications or substitutes. But doctors argue that this can happen at medical shops too. We cannot be sure that the medicine online sold in pharmacies are not fake. It's the same with online pharmacies too.
Other concerns include the location of the pharmacies. The internet has removed the boundaries between countries. The brand names may often cause confusion. They may be of the same brands but with different medicines, or even lookalike drugs with different ingredients. Ultimately, the patient is at the receiving end of wrong medicines.
Sometimes, medicines sold online without prescription may be counterfeit, have no active ingredients and may even contain harmful ingredients.
Experts say there is no proper technical infrastructure in place to monitor the sale of online drugs. Those who complain against online pharmacies say that they encourage self-medication, customers make illegal purchases of habit-forming drugs, prescriptions are not verified online and patients buy drugs without original prescriptions.
Despite all the risks and concerns, online pharmacies have advantages also with main advantage of medicine order online.
LAWS FOR ONLINE PHARMACIES:
Online pharmacies in India do not have a specific law to governor giving medicines after online medical consultation but multiple laws govern them in an indirect manner. The Drugs and Cosmetics Act, 1940, and the Drugs and Cosmetics Rules, 1945, have guidelines on the sale of Schedule H and Schedule X drugs.These drugs can be sold only on prescription and there are specific rules for labelling and barcoding.
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