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Home Industry News Online pharmacies ‘illegally selling antibiotics without prescriptions’

Online pharmacies ‘illegally selling antibiotics without prescriptions’

20th February 2017

Many online pharmacies are breaking the law by selling antibiotics to UK customers without the need for a prescription.

This is according to a new study from Imperial College London, which analysed 20 pharmacies that were available for UK citizens to access online and found that antibiotics were illegally available without prescription on 45 percent of the sites surveyed.

It was also shown that 80 percent of online pharmacies let customers choose their treatments, dosages and therapy duration, potentially increasing their risk of serious side effects, as well as heightening the chances of antimicrobial resistance.

Moreover, 75 percent of pharmacies included in the study lacked evidence of their registration status with the Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency and General Pharmaceutical Council, as required by law.

Study co-author Dr Sara Boyd, a National Institute for Health Research academic clinical fellow in infectious diseases and microbiology at Imperial College London, said: "These findings are a real concern and raise several important issues regarding antibiotic resistance and patient safety with online pharmacies."

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