How to identify a trustworthy online pharmacy

With a number of Online pharmacies taking advantage of rising business potentials, customers are unaware of the risks they might be exposed to by trusting a simple SMS or an advertisement.

Know the Risks

Buying from unregistered online pharmacies can be dangerous. Before you order medicine online, it is important to know all the risk factors associated with it

Counterfeit or substandard drugs

The drugs you receive may look real, but they could be counterfeit, contaminated, expired or otherwise unsafe. If you receive counterfeit or substandard medicine, they could not only prevent you from getting better but also make your condition much worse than it actually is.

Slight differences in your medicine can make a big difference.

All medicine that is approved for use in the Sri Lanka has been fully reviewed by the Ministry of Health. Medicine that is approved in other countries or produced by unknown sources may have slight variations that could cause your condition to worsen, cause new side effects or you could even develop a resistance to the actual medication you should be taking.

You could put your personal and financial information at risk.

Most unregistered / illegal online pharmacies lack adequate security features which protect personal and financial information, and some may even intentionally misuse the information you provide. These sites may also infect your computer with viruses or sell your personal data to other rogue websites and Internet scam schemes. You would also risk being harassed by repeated emails and phone calls or being charged for products you never placed an order for.

Some pharmacies that initiate communication over WhatsApp or Facebook may not  have a proper website or an online ordering system. This could result in problems such as order mix ups and misuse of personal medical information.

Signs of an unregistered / illegal online Pharmacy

  • Allows you to purchase medication without a prescription
  • Offers large discounts or cheap prices that seem too good to be true
  • Sends spam or unsolicited emails offering cheap products
  • Is not licensed with the National Medical Regularity Authority (NMRA)

Tips for identifying safe online Pharmacies:

  • Always requires s prescription for your medication, unless under special explainable circumstances
  • They provide a physical address, Contact numbers and a website
  • Only licensed Pharmacists will be available to process your orders
  • They possess a license with the National Medical Regularity Authority (NMRA)
  • Have verified reviews on Social media platforms from actual buyers

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