The public must be warned about the dangers of the online medicines free-for-all1 min read

The government needs to take action to stop prescription drugs, including opioids and slimming tablets, being obtained from online pharmacies that can avoid regulation.

The internet has become the blind spot in the regulation of medicines in the UK and it is clear some unscrupulous companies are taking advantage.

Most recently, the BBC Panorama programme found that opioid-based painkillers and slimming tablets were being sold through online clinics using doctors in Romania. It was one of several exposes in the media looking at how prescription drugs can be bought in large quantities with few checks in place, and which in turn can be easily bypassed. It is a worrying situation that has left regulators scrambling to catch up.

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