Ryan Haight Online Pharmacy Consumer Protection Act to Become Law

President Bush signed the Ryan Haight Online Pharmacy Protection Act (H.R. 6353) on October 15th making it a law. Congrats to this administration for seeing this act through.

Most people believe that online pharmacies are scams selling fake or illegal pills at high rates for ED, and oxycontin. With the passing of this law, hopefully more legitimacy will be given to online pharmacies in the public view.

Also helping to make online pharmacies more respected are Health 2.0 companies like eDrugSearch which "brings together the world’s most highly respected online pharmacies through a comprehensive, easy-to-use search engine."

They vet all the pharmacies their search engine queries and also provide "up-to-the-minute price search, detailed drug information, and other advanced features that make it the premier portal for online prescription medication shoppers. Our advanced search features enable members to identify pharmacies with specific licensing requirements, third-party accreditations, Better Business Bureau memberships, and more."

eDrugSearch's founder, Cary Byrd, an impassioned advocate of safe online pharmacies, wrote a great summary of the Ryan Haight Online Pharmacy Protection Act's provisions last month on his blog.

Here is the condensed version. Thanks again to Cary for for the succinct write-up.

- Amends the Controlled Substances Act to prohibit the delivery, distribution, or dispensing of controlled substances over the Internet without a valid prescription. Exempts telemedicine practitioners.

- Defines “valid prescription” as a prescription that is issued for a legitimate purpose by a practitioner who has conducted at least one in-person medical evaluation of the patient.

- Adds definitions to the Controlled Substances Act relating to online pharmacies and the issuance of prescriptions over the Internet.

- Imposes registration and reporting requirements on online pharmacies.

- Authorizes the Attorney General to issue a special registration under this Act for telemedicine practitioners.

- Increases criminal penalties involving controlled substances in Schedules II, IV, and V of the Controlled Substances Act.

- Authorizes states to apply for injunctions or obtain damages and other civil remedies against online pharmacies that are deemed a threat to state residents.

Patients have cited access to medications as being a barrier for medication adherence. If you have trouble getting your meds and affording them, look to online resources like eDrugSearch to provide you with the best prices and services that will deliver you scripts to your door.

I hate to sound like an advert, but with the economy the way it is, medications should not be sacrificed in this dire time, and there are less expensive alternatives than going to your local pharmacy. I am all for supporting small, locally owned businesses (we go to a druggist in Southport where my wife got penny candy as a girl), however one's health and medication regime come first - if you cannot afford to pay for small town service, look for alternatives.

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