ALEXANDRIA, Va. — A new bipartisan bill introduced in the Senate seeks to protect consumers from Internet drug sellers posing as legitimate pharmacies.
Sens. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif; and Jeff Sessions, R-Ala., introduced The Online Pharmacy Safety Act of 2011 on Thursday, which "targets fraud associated with illegitimate online drug sellers, particularly those who sell counterfeit drugs, provide drugs without a prescription or take money without providing anything in return." The bill also would require the Food and Drug Administration to establish a registry of legitimate online pharmacy websites.
“Consumers deserve access to safe, legitimate online pharmacies,” Feinstein said. “If you need to order your prescriptions online, you should be assured you are getting the real medication — not contaminated ingredients or even the wrong ingredients. This bill will put a stop to fraudulent websites that sell illegal or counterfeit drugs or take advantage of consumers.”
The National Association of Chain Drug Stores announced it endorsed the legislation, noting that research has found that 1-in-6 Americans — or more than 36 million consumers — has purchased prescription medication online without a valid prescription.
“The problem is exacerbated because these rogue sites purposely masquerade as legitimate pharmacies, duping innocent Americans into purchasing unsafe or fake medicine. As a result, Americans’ health is put at risk and the costs to the nation’s healthcare system rise dramatically,” the letter stated. “Your legislation will protect Americans against this growing threat by ensuring they have the resources they need to access safe and legitimate online pharmacies.”
Click here to view the letter.