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U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

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What can I do to help ensure I do not receive or take counterfeit medicine?

  • Purchase ONLY from state-licensed pharmacies that are located in the United States, where FDA and state authorities can assure the quality of drug manufacturing, packaging, distribution and labeling. This way, you know your medicine is coming from a reputable source, and you can get help if you have any problems with your medicine.
  • If you buy over the Internet:
    • Check to see if the Internet pharmacy is licensed, is in good standing, and is located in the United States. Contact your local state board of pharmacy or the National Association of Boards of Pharmacy (NABP) at http://www.nabp.net  or 1-847-698-6227, or;
    • Check to see if an Internet pharmacy site has the VIPPS Seal, the seal of the Verified Internet Pharmacy Practice Sites Accreditation Program. This program was established by the NABP to help protect you and guide you through Internet pharmacy shopping. Legitimate Internet pharmacies that carry the VIPPS Seal are listed at http://www.nabp.net/programs/accreditation/vipps/.
  • Know your medicine. Any time you get a prescription refilled, check the color, texture, taste and shape of the medicine. Anything different? Talk to your pharmacist.


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