Using Scanned Prescription Online Sale Of Drugs Are Not Advisable

According to IT Act, the online sale of drugs using scanned prescription may not achieve all the critical rules of existing laws of the land as the scanned signature isn’t valid even. Presently the IT Act is being misinterpreted and being misquoted by the so-called in the marketplace of online pharmacies, expressed Dr. B R Jagashetty, former national adviser (Drugs Control) to CDSCO and former Karnataka drugs controller.

The fabricated scanned prescription can cause legal implications for the doctor whose Rx has been copied. Scanned prescription with signatures can be easily copied using any editing software and that leads to abuse and multiple dispensing, he added. This is where the electronic prescription is the futuristic model of drug dispensing.

Electronic Rx (E-Rx) is made by the doctor utilizing software and it is electronically signed. It helps in doctor and drug store integration, prevents misinterpretation, avoids mistakes of reading the handwriting of doctors while dispensing. It slows down the batch number and wrong expiry mismatch.

It helps in easy moving of refills starting with one pharmacy to another according to customer choice with Rx validity clearly known to the new pharmacy, expressed Dr. Jagashetty at a session titled ‘Drugs and Cosmetics – A Legal Perspective’ organised by the Karnataka Institute for Law and Parliamentary Reform as a team with Vivekanand College of Law and Vivekanand College of Pharmacy, Bengaluru.

E-Rx gives FDA a much cleaner and better long-term records over manual keeping. FDA can demand a complete copy of Rx records on its own server if necessary. The regulatory official can view the entire end-to-end movement of the prescription from prescribing to dispensing.

Using Scanned Prescription Online Sale Of Drugs Are Not Advisable

Besides, E-Rx setup modernizes overall healthcare establishment in the country and makes the environment for only serious players which would also decrease costs tremendously while at the same time increasing patient safety, brought up Dr. Jagashetty. Presently e-prescription is a clear win-win for the regulator, government, patients, doctors, pharmacists and chemist shops.

The concept is as of now in vogue in the US as ‘VIPPS’ program. The new EU regulation mandates online drug stores to display the related logo which was enforced from July 1, 2015. It automatically presses for registering with the MHRA (Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency) and displays the same in all the website pages which affirms that the seller is a registered online drug store.

In India, now it is time that CDSCO can fix hefty fees for registration of online pharmacy players and bring strict rules/guidelines for displaying the dispensing pharmacy information on the site with full address, contacts and proper logo assigned to it. CDSCO may also direct to have a retail license from the respective state regulatory officials though online is one of the modes of sales.

The controller can consider permitting only e-prescription with electronic signature since any registered medical practitioner can do his electronic signature only on approval of the same by the government of India according to the norms fixed. It can impose punishments for violations including hefty fines if violations are found, he said.


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