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Should I buy medication over the Internet?

The best route to access medication or gain drug advice is via your GP or other health professional.

  • If you take more than one medicine at a time, your GP will know of any possible drug interactions – these can cause undue side effects or more serious consequences
  • Some medications require pre checks prior to commencement due to possible complications with underlying health conditions that you may not yet be aware of, such as checking your heart via a ECG (electrocardiogram).
  • Some medications will reduce the effectiveness of hormonal and oral contraceptives – you need to be aware of this so that you can take extra precautions
  • Your GP can monitor your medication and provide follow up and guidance
  • Your GP will understand and advise over any interactions or increased side effects if you are using illicit drugs

The above helps you to be aware and be informed

Should you choose to buy medications on line – Be Aware and Beware of fakes!
  • You can be placing yourself at considerable risk
  • Many Websites selling medication originate from outside the UK and therefore have different regulatory standards - this can increase the risk of unknowingly buying fakes or substandard medication
  • Be aware of sites offering cheap prices, bad packaging will indicate bad products, Check URL’s and look for signs of suspicious websites.
  • Those sites registered to sell in the UK must be registered with the Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) and be on the list of registered on line sellers and they must display the European common logo and every page of their website.

We recognise that prescribing practice of healthcare professionals ( i.e what you are prescribed for a specific condition) can vary from country to country. This is often because of regulatory control or due to governing bodies. The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) in the UK sets out clinical guidance and pathways of care. The British National Formulary sets out the range of medications and suitable clinical usage.

  • If you think that a medication you have taken outside of the UK isn’t prescribed in the UK – speak with the GP they will advise on alternative prescribing or it may be available but under a different name.

Link with a GP or health professional first!