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A Halt To Selling Opioids Online

It’s something we’ve all run across at some point on the world wide web. Unfamiliar “online pharmacies” (usually run from overseas) that promise to ship you medicines without a formal prescription. Well the truth is, those types of sites definitely exist and, in case you were unaware, also dispense painkiller meds to anyone with an active credit card. Obviously that type of transaction is illegal and now the FDA and DEA want to shut their admins down permanently.

Both the Food & Drug Administration (FDA) and the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) delivered warning letters this month to all websites that illegally sell opioid pain pills. A formal press release was also issued, emphasizing how seriously the orgs take this initiative.

“As the FDA works to forcefully tackle the opioid crisis on all fronts, we cannot allow rogue online pharmacies to continue to fuel the crisis by illegally offering opioids for sale and circumventing the important safeguards that have been put in place for opioids to help protect the public health,” acting FDA Commissioner Ned Sharpless explained in the statement. “Today’s effort is also noteworthy because while the FDA partners regularly with the DEA, this is the first time we have issued joint warning letters with them. This action further strengthens the warning to the operators of these websites. We remain committed to using all available regulatory and enforcement tools to stop the illicit flow of opioids online.”

Indeed this is actually the first time that both the FDA and DEA have sent out joint warning letters, proving just how serious this issue really is. 10 sites, in particular, were called out in the release, but (as we know) plenty more exist within the realms of the dark web.

Sharpless also correctly pointed out other risks related to doing business with unlicensed online pharmacies. For one thing, sharing your credit card number with them can easily lead to identity theft. There are also concerns about computer viruses and bank fraud.

The letter ended with a stern warning. All of the named sites have 15 days to halt the activity of selling online opioids. If they fail to do so, there will be legal actions taken and criminal charges will be filed.

Let’s hope that gets the message out loud and clear.