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Avoiding Counterfeit Medication

Even experts have difficulty identifying prescription medicine that has been counterfeited. What looks like a discount of a lifetime could lead to sickness or even death if you or your loved ones fall victim to these fake medicines. These resources run the range from high tech to focused information to help you take steps to avoid counterfeit medication’s dangers. And one of the best ways to make sure you avoid fake medicine is to only purchase prescription medications from reputable sources online or locally.

Check My Meds App from EMD Serono

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EMD Serono, Inc., is a pharmaceutical manufacturer specializing in HIV-associated wasting, infertility and relapsing MS therapeutics. The Check My Meds app is a free tool available in English for iOS and Android mobile phones. It enables patients, caregivers and others to verify the authenticity of the serial numbers on most EMD Serono products.

In addition to authentication of the EMD Serono medicine package, app users can also connect to support staff for questions about the medication, its appropriate use, and general information. This tool underscores the importance of incorporating technology into product security checks in the prescription drug supply chain.

Check My Meds is available for free in the iTunes or Google Play stores.

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Download from Google Play

FDA BeSafeRX Campaign

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“FDA BeSafeRx – Know Your Online Pharmacy” is a national campaign to educate consumers about the dangers of buying medicine from fake online pharmacies and help people safely buy medicine online. Sponsored by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the campaign seeks to educate consumers and health care professionals about the health risks of buying prescription medicine through fake online pharmacies and to help current and potential online pharmacy consumers to make informed purchasing decisions

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Fight the Fakes

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Fight the Fakes is a campaign that aims to raise awareness about the dangers of fake medicines. The campaign gives a voice to those who have been personally impacted and shares the stories of those working to put a stop to this threat to public health. It seeks to build a global movement of organizations and individuals who will shine light on the negative impact that fake medicines have on people around the globe and to reduce the negative consequences on individuals worldwide.

Fight the Fakes partners endorse the campaign and share the belief that coordination among all actors involved in the manufacturing and distribution of medicines is vital to tackle this public health threat.

CSIP is a partner of Fight the Fakes.

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Find a Certified VIPPS Online Pharmacy

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You have options when you are buying medicine online, but the safest way to purchase drugs online is through pharmacies accredited by the VIPPS or Vet-VIPPS programs. Choosing to buy your prescriptions from a trustworthy provider can help eliminate the risks associated with sites that fail to comply with federal and state laws and regulations. Protect yourself from rogue sites and select a VIPPS pharmacy for you and your family.

Find a Certified VIPPS Online Pharmacy

The VIPPS Online Pharmacy Directory is powered by The National Association of Boards of Pharmacy.

IPR Center Reports

The IPR Center stands as a focal point in the U.S. government’s fight against counterfeiting and the flow of counterfeit goods into the commerce of the United States. The center employs a true task force model to optimize the roles and enforcement efforts of member agencies, while enhancing government-industry partnerships to support ongoing IPR enforcement initiatives. Read more about National IPR Coordination Center activities.

View the IPR Center Threat Report and Survey

Know Your Source (FDA)

Wholesale drug distributors are a link between manufacturers and health care professionals. Their role is to ensure prescription medications are delivered safely and efficiently to thousands of health care practitioners and pharmacies nationwide every day. While the U.S. health care supply chain is one of the most secure and sophisticated in the world, there is a growing network of rogue wholesale drug distributors selling potentially unsafe drugs in the U.S. market.

In order to protect your patients from unsafe or ineffective drugs, the FDA urges health care professionals to verify that their supplier is licensed by the state. Drugs from rogue wholesale drug distributors may harm your patients and expose them to unknown risks or side effects. The FDA advises health care providers to know the source for prescription drugs.

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NABP: Buying Medicine Online

“These days, buying prescription drugs from the Internet is easy, but finding a safe source for those medicines is not. More and more people are turning to the Internet for cheaper drugs that are easy to get, but medicines purchased from these Web sites often come with the risk of harming you or your family. Rogue Web sites are all over the Internet selling drugs that are not what they appear to be. These sites may be selling drugs that are counterfeit, contaminated, or otherwise unsafe. …”

Read the Full Report

Permanent Forum for International Pharmaceutical Crime

The Permanent Forum on International Pharmaceutical Crime is an international enforcement forum aimed at protecting public health and safety through the exchange of information and ideas to foster mutual cooperation. The members of PFIPC are dedicated professionals from 15 member countries worldwide whose goal is to enhance the protection of the public health by combating pharmaceutical crime.

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Possible Dangers of Buying Medicines Over the Internet

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration wants to warn consumers about the possible dangers of buying medicines over the Internet. Some websites sell prescription and over-the-counter drugs that may not be safe to use and could put people’s health at risk.

So how can you protect yourself? FDA says that consumers should know how to recognize a legal Internet pharmacy and how to buy medicines online safely.

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Quick Tips for Buying Medicines Online

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The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has made available some helpful public information for consumers to assist them in purchasing medicines from reputable sources on the internet. Learn more about how to protect yourself as a consumer, or, if you are a health care professional, how to advise patients on safe online medicine purchases.

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