Falsified medicines are a major threat to public health and safety. The illegal sale of medicinal products to the public via the internet by retailers operating outside the law is a serious danger as falsified medicinal products may easily reach the public in this way.
As part of an EU-wide initiative to help patients avoid online sellers of fake medicines, as of 1 July 2015 all online pharmacies or retailers legally operating in the EU should display a common logo.
As this leaflet (pdf) explains, the logo has a two-step verification process to ensure maximum protection from falsified medicines, which are usually ineffective, substandard and dangerous. The logo, which consists of a white cross and a striped green background, links to the website of the national competent authority listing all legally operating online pharmacies/retailers.
National websites are listed with the European Medicines Agency.
UK national website www.gov.uk/mhra
By simply clicking on the logo, a potential online purchaser of the medicine will be sent to the entry of the pharmacy on that national list, thus completing the verification process. A quiz, poster (pdf) and animation explaining the purpose of the new logo are also available.