Did you know that according to Interpol at least “11% of medical products sold online are counterfeit and all regions of the world are affected”?
This presents a major safety risk to those New Zealanders who buy medicines online from unregulated overseas websites.
In New Zealand, all prescription and other medicines are approved and monitored for quality and safety by Medsafe.
This means the safest way to buy online medicines is from a legitimate New Zealand online pharmacy like ZOOM Pharmacy.
The dangers of fake or unregulated medicines
There are severe health risks with buying medicine online when you are not sure the supplier is legitimate.
Fake or unregulated medicines have been found to:
- Have the wrong active ingredient
- Have the wrong amount of active ingredient (too little, too much, or none at all)
- Be out of date or not stored properly (so not effective)
- Contain ingredients withdrawn from sale in NZ due to safety concerns
- Be contaminated with toxins (mercury, arsenic, rat poison or cement have even been found)
- Contain undisclosed ingredients (eg prescription drugs in herbal weight loss medicines)
The most common fake or illegal medicine
Many types of medicines have been found to be fake or illegal. But, some of the most common fake medicines seized by Interpol’s yearly Operation Pangea are:
- Erectile dysfunction (ED) medicines
- Anabolic steroids
- Diabetes medicines
- Cancer medicines
And now, the sale of fake or substandard COVID-19 medical products (face masks, sanitizers, unauthorised anti-virus medication) is on the rise.
Is it legal to buy prescription medicine online from overseas?
In general, buying prescription medicine from overseas (technically importing) is not legal. There are some exceptions to this. You can read more on Medsafe’s Importing Medicines page.
Why are prescriptions required for some medicines in NZ and not overseas?
Some medicines sold legally overseas without a prescription, need a prescription in New Zealand. This is to ensure that New Zealanders receive safe and appropriate medical care.
For example, a doctor will know whether an existing health issue means you should, or should not, take a medicine. And how it might interact with your other medicines. They will also carefully monitor you for side effects.
How can you tell if a New Zealand website selling prescription medicine online is legitimate?
To operate legally, a NZ online pharmacy must hold a Licence to Operate Pharmacy. They must also be under the immediate supervision and control of a registered pharmacist.
If in doubt, ask to see the pharmacy licence, and for the name of the pharmacist in charge. You can check the pharmacist is on the Pharmacy Council Register.
Genuine NZ online pharmacies will also always ask you to provide your prescription.
Be safe, buy from New Zealand
When you buy from a legitimate New Zealand online pharmacy like ZOOM Pharmacy, you can be sure you are getting the correct medicine. Plus, you can get expert advice from your pharmacist.
Why not check out ZOOM Pharmacy’s great online medicine prices
ZOOM offers great prices on unfunded prescription medicines, including erectile dysfunction and weight loss medication.
And you can save even more with ZOOM – if you are on four or more funded meds, you get free prescriptions, packing and delivery to your door.
And as always, if you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact our caring team of highly trained pharmacists on 0508 966 622 or email@example.com
- Medsafe Dangers of purchasing medicines online highlighted https://www.medsafe.govt.nz/publications/media/2018/OperationPangea.asp
- Medsafe Sale of medicines and medical devices via social media https://www.medsafe.govt.nz/compliance/SaleOnSocialMedia.asp
- Medsafe’s Importing Medicines https://www.medsafe.govt.nz/Consumers/MIET/ImportMedicines.asp
On four medicines or more?
Get FREE prescriptions, packing & delivery!
Anywhere in New Zealand! No matter what region you live in and your Alert Level, it’s business as usual when you choose ZOOM Pharmacy.
How to send your prescription
- Use your patient portal
- OR tell your medical centre to send it
- OR freepost / courier it yourself
- OR take a photo and securely upload your prescription by using the form below