Pune: Chemists from the city have expressed concern over the growing popularity of e-pharmacy. They feel that the government should make regulations for e-pharmacy to ensure that drugs such as sleeping pills and Medical Termination of Pregnancy (MTP) kits are not given to underage consumers.
Speaking to Sakal Times, Prasanna Patil from Chemists Association of Pune district said that there are no regulations for e-pharmacy. “There are no government regulations for e-pharmacy. So we don’t know who orders medicines in this case. There have been cases where youngsters are ordering MTP kits and sleeping pills. Simply because it is easier. But there might be severe complications related to it,” said Patil.
He also said that if a person wants to return medicines, there is no provision. “Moreover, the chemists always help the patients with the timing of the medicines and how to take them. In the case of e-pharmacy, this is not possible,” said Patil. He further questioned that if in case a wrong medicine is delivered to the patient, who will be held responsible for the complications. “The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) will not be able to control e-pharmacy. Then what are the provisions to control or regulate it,” said Patil.
Echoing similar sentiments, Madan Patil, Organising Secretary of the Maharashtra Chemists Association, said that a pharmacist needs many permissions in order to set up their business. However, e-pharmacy sites are not bound by regulatory bodies.
“Since there are no permissions needed to start online pharmacy, it becomes more dangerous and uncertain. Moreover, drugs for psychotherapy such as anti-depressants can be bought without checking any prescription. Such drugs in the hand of youngsters can be dangerous. Hence, it is important that the government look into the e-pharmacy business,” said Patil. He pointed out that e-pharmacy in other countries has been limited and is closely monitored and similar provisions should be made in India.