[Ip-health] Fighting back against big pharma propaganda about online pharmacies

Gabriel Levitt gabriel.levitt at pharmacychecker.com
Mon Aug 24 19:55:23 PDT 2015


http://pharmacycheckerblog.com/alliance-for-safe-online-pharmacies-using-dec
eption-to-keep-you-paying-more (PharmacyChecker responds to pharma's attacks
and deceptions)

 

Alliance for Safe Online Pharmacies - Using Deception to Keep You Paying
More

 

A paid "news release" this week by the Alliance for Safe Online Pharmacies
(ASOP) and LegitScript and widely disseminated by PR Newswire- deceitfully
and incorrectly associated PharmacyChecker.com with a federal indictment
involving the wholesale operations of a Canadian company. A former
consultant to PharmacyChecker.com was, unfortunately, swept up in this
indictment for an action having nothing to do with his work with
PharmacyChecker.com (see our posting about the
<http://pharmacycheckerblog.com/montana-case-against-canadadrugs-what-consum
ers-should-know>). But even though PharmacyChecker, nor any of its
executives or employees, are the subject of the recent indictment or even
mentioned in it, ASOP and LegitScript, who we see as sharks for Big Pharma
and Big Pharmacy, could not resist throwing a public relations party, which
we believe is aimed at manipulating the media and reporters, government, and
worse - consumers!  It appears that they spent a lot of money on a PR firm,
ECI Communications, to put together and disseminate lies about
PharmacyChecker.com and misleading information about international online
pharmacies. 

 

Want proof? After reading ASOP and LegitScript's deceitfully misleading news
release, a writer at the publication Medicine Marketing & Media was
apparently duped into writing on Wednesday that PharmacyChecker was being
indicted! After we contacted that publication about the inaccuracy, we were
swiftly given an apology, the article was corrected
<http://www.mmm-online.com/pharmaceutical/five-things-for-pharma-marketers-t
o-know-wednesday-august-19/article/433515/>, and the following statement
posted: "CORRECTION: An earlier version of this story incorrectly listed
PharmacyChecker.com as a defendant. PharmacyChecker.com is not a defendant
in the case. 

 

A renowned expert in First Amendment Law considers the news release
"libelous" and ASOP, LegitScript, and ECI have been asked to take it down
<http://www.pharmacychecker.com/libel-eci-asop-legitscript.pdf>.  PR
Newswire has also been asked to remove it, as it appears to violate PR
Newswire's own guidelines regarding libelous content and this certainly
doesn't help their existing reputation for distributing "low quality
content."  However, perhaps due to the enormous funding behind these groups,
they have yet to make any attempt to correct the situation. We'll see how
much they care about the truth by their actions. 

 

It's important to keep in mind who these groups are.  ASOP's members and
funders include large pharmaceutical companies and the National Association
of Chain Drugstores. To protect their bottom lines, these companies and ASOP
lobby congress and federal agencies, such as the FDA, to try to curtail your
access to much more affordable and safe medication from outside the U.S. In
fact, ASOP is actually located in the offices of the government relations
and communications consulting firm FraegreBD, where ASOPs executive
director, also happens to be a Vice President. And ECI Communications is a
PR firm which does extensive business for U.S. pharmaceutical companies.  Of
course LegitScript.com happens to be a founding member of ASOP. Can we trust
LegitScript.com or ASOP? Well, you already know who ASOP works for, right
<http://www.opensecrets.org/lobby/lobbyist.php?&id=Y0000026935L&year=2013>?
On the other hand, much of LegitScript.com's income is from a contract with
the FDA for $5.2 million
<http://judiciary.house.gov/_cache/files/e6fee7f2-9c3b-4e42-b3f3-ebca08a3851
0/horton-redacted.pdf>. That's not bad in and of itself but, if that money
is being used to spread misinformation to U.S. consumers and lobby congress
and maybe even the FDA itself, then that stinks. 

 

The truth is that American consumers are buying medication from outside the
U.S., five million of them each year, because many of them can't afford
prices in the U.S. Since 2003, PharmacyChecker.com has been working hard to
publish information that helps Americans find safe and affordable medication
from these pharmacies. Yet it seems the only safe online pharmacy to ASOP is
one that is approved by LegitScript.com, which in turn believes that every
pharmacy outside the U.S. that sells into the U.S. including licensed
pharmacies in Canada, are not "legitimate" or are "rogue." 

 

ASOP's and LegitScript's vision of "legitimacy" is a nightmare for
Americans! Thirty-five million Americans don't fill a script each year
because of cost. A safe online pharmacy is not safe for a consumer who can't
afford the medications it sells. ASOP, LegitScript, the NABP, FDA, etc.,
can't wish away the fact that safe international online pharmacies are a
lifeline for many American consumers. Scaring these Americans away from safe
pharmacy options
<http://www.nytimes.com/2014/03/25/opinion/scare-tactics-over-foreign-drugs.
html?_r=0> with misleading and false information means that more Americans
will go without their prescribed medications. There is nothing "safe" or
"legit" about that.

 




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