Guidance For Physicians On Safe Purchase Of Drugs From Pharmaceutical Distributors

 GUIDANCE FOR PHYSICIANS ON SAFE PURCHASE OF DRUGS FROM PHARMACEUTICAL DISTRIBUTORS Health care providers can help protect the public health and reduce potential legal liability by avoiding purchasing prescription drugs that do not comply with U.S. regulatory requirements.  To help ensure safe drug purchasing from pharmaceutical distributors, FDA recommends that health care providers and their staff do the following:

  1. Ensure you receive FDA-approved prescription Drugs.Buying directly from the manufacturer or a wholesale drug distributor licensed in your state will reduce the chances of unsafe of ineffective drugs reaching your patients. (check if state-approved at
  2. Beware of offers too good to be true.Aggressive marketing tactics and deep discounts on prescription drugs may indicate the products are stolen, counterfeit, substandard or unapproved
  3. Buy only from state-licensed wholesale drug distributors.
  4. Caution:check for these signs that a prescription may be unsafe, ineffective or fake:
    1. Label is not in English
    2. Packaging looks slightly different from the FDA approved product
    3. Product name differs from the name of the FDA approved drug
    4. Dosing recommendations are unfamiliar
    5. Safety information or warnings are missing
    6. Dosage form or administration is different
  5. Pay close attention to patient feedback.If several patients report that they are experiencing a new side effect or lack of therapeutic effect form the same product, consider that the drug may be substandard or counterfeit.Health care providers and patients are encourages to report any adverse events or suspect medication to the FDA’s MedWatch Safety Information and Adverse Event Reporting Program either online at or by calling 1-800-332-1088.