Asthmatics Can Save Money Safely by Buying from VIPPS Certified Online Pharmacies
Partnership for Safe Medicines
WASHINGTON, May 2, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Asthmatics suffer from both chronic shortness of breath that if treated inconsistently can lead to serious illness and the burden of daily medication which requires conscientious treatment as well as expense.
With this double burden, asthmatics may wonder if there is a reasonable cost solution to the chronic condition. Shopping online for medication can be both a timesaver and a cost saver, if done safely from VIPPS certified websites. By price comparing at VIPPS certified online pharmacies, asthmatics can save up to 52% of the costs on their inhaled corticosteroid medications alone.
"Purchasing medication online from a VIPPS pharmacy is a safe way for Americans to price compare and find better deals on their medication. Using a VIPPS pharmacy insures that the patient isn't getting ripped off with a counterfeit medication, a potentially life threatening result," warns Dr. Marv Shepherd, Director of the Center for Pharmacoeconomic Studies at the University of Texas at Austin's College of Pharmacy.
Indeed, in 2011, a British businessman was convicted of importing and selling counterfeit asthma inhalers that stopped dispensing medication after 1/3 of their doses had been dispensed.
"The horror of the fake inhalers is that asthmatics believed they were inhaling daily medication, but instead it was just compressed air," said Dr. Shepherd.
Shopping for inhaled corticosteroids using the National Association of Boards of Pharmacy's list of VIPPS pharmacies, the Partnership for Safe Medicines staff found that the medications listed by the by the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology's Allergy & Asthma Medication Guide could vary in price by up to 52%. For example, popular children's inhaler medication, Advair Diskus 100/50, could be purchased from the sampling of VIPPS approved online pharmacies from prices ranging between $101.53 and $201.64
While the above example is only from a sample of five VIPPS approved online pharmacies available at http://www.nabp.net/programs/accreditation/vipps/find-a-vipps-online-pharmacy/, there are 30 different online pharmacies available that meet US federal and state laws and regulations.
"Purchasing medications from VIPPS online pharmacies is a great way to shop around and find better deals on medication," said Dr. Shepherd.
Dr. Shepherd went on to point out that for families that struggle to afford even the discounted medication available on line, the next place to turn is to nonprofit and government programs that provide assistance to the needy.
The Partnership for Prescription Assistance, NeedyMeds, Rx Outreach, Together Rx Access, the National Conference of State Legislatures, and Medicare all have prescription medication assistance programs for the financially disadvantaged.
"These programs provide prescription assistance to those in need," said Dr. Richard J. Sagall, President of NeedyMeds. "There is no reason to risk your health by buying from an overseas online pharmacy that is not VIPPS approved. No matter how good the deal seems, when the inhaler doesn't work, your lungs won't either."
Comprised of more than 65 non-profit organizations, the Partnership for Safe Medicines is a public health group committed to the safety of prescription medicines and protecting consumers against counterfeit, substandard or otherwise unsafe medicines. PSM can be found on Facebook (http://www.facebook.com/SafeMedicines), Twitter (@safemedicines), and the web at www.safemedicines.org.
SOURCE The Partnership for Safe Medicines