There are those who need medications regularly, but the high costs can deter them. If they are on fixed incomes, decisions have to be made: “Do I pay for the medications I really need or do I put food on my table, pay my mortgage or health insurance bills?” It could mean the difference, in some instances, of making a life or possible death decision.
Consider those who may have to forego medicine. It could be any age group relying on medication for heart disease, cancer, Alzheimers, Parkinsons, or other illnesses…those that are very necessary to maintain a normal life. Children from low-income households may desperately need treatment for diabetes, asthma, cancer or other health-related illnesses. Consider also those who are out of work and suffering from depression, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, heart or cancer issues. Where do they turn?
To save money, discount prescription medicines may just seem the route to go. But buyers beware! Last month, the Food and Drug Administration cracked down on over 4000 websites that were selling “unapproved medications to U.S. consumers.” They initiated the BeSafeRx campaign, which provides information on determining if a web site is or is not selling FDA approved medicines.
The first allure would probably be the lower cost of the medication. Second, no doctor approval is required, which can save a consumer time and a possible co-pay. Unfortunately, these sites are often unsecured, allowing unscrupulous individuals to view any submitted credit or banking account information. Not only does a consumer run the risk of obtaining faulty medications, but they also run the risk of becoming a victim of identity theft. It is highly encouraged that users NOT purchase medicines online, unless they have verified that the company is state-board approved, requires a prescription from one’s doctor, is in good standing with the Better Business Bureau, and provides a physical address and phone number that is located within the United States. Should you have further questions on this issue, visit the FDA’s BeSafeRx site or contact your local Better Business Bureau.
photo credit: <a href=”http://www.flickr.com/photos/xerostomia/698836659/”>Rob!</a> via <a href=”http://photopin.com”>photopin</a> <a href=”http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/2.0/”>cc</a>