Canadian Pharmacy stores are steadily multiplying on the web, claiming to offer great savings to their consumers. Are they really the solution to the rising prescription costs or are merely ploys to lure buyers into purchasing counterfeit medicines? Let’s find out!
What is a Canadian Pharmacy?
A Canadian Pharmacy takes the definition of an online pharmacy—a mail order prescription service operating online, more often, exclusively. The “Canadian” term in online pharmacy names are supposed to give the customers an idea that the shops are selling affordable medications. This is because Canada is best known for its affordable medicines—drugs that cost hugely cheaper than the medicines in the United States.
Canadian Pharmacy Best-Selling Products
We can’t map out when the first Canadian Pharmacy stores came to be, but they were possibly birthed out of the necessity for sourcing cheaper medicines someplace else than the local drugstores. Medicare and prescriptions are often exorbitantly priced in countries like the USA, so buyers are desperate for alternatives to just purchasing medicines at neighborhood drugstores.
Although there is no technical definition of a Canadian Pharmacy, we’ve come up with several possible definitions of Canadian Pharmacy shops:
1. Canada-based store extensions
Supposedly, stores claiming to be “Canadian” should operate from Canada. Some Canadian Pharmacy stores are actually from Canada and are online extensions of an existing physical Canada local drugstore.
2. Canada-based purely online stores
Some Canadian online pharmacies may not have real local drugstores related to them. In some cases, these Canadian drugstores have operators based in Canada but are operating exclusively online.
3. Not Canadian pharmacies at all
Sadly, in most cases, online pharmacies named as Canadian stores are not from the country nor are sourcing their medicines from the country. Some stores just plaster the term “Canada” all over their stores or domain names so they can get buyers to think that they are offering the cheapest choices for medications.
Canadian International Pharmacy Association
Most legitimate online Canadian Pharmacies feature the approvals of several pertinent organizations like the following:
- Canadian International Pharmacy Association (CIPA Rx)
- Manitoba International Pharmacists Association (MIPA)
- Canadian Pharmacists Association (CPA)
- International Pharmacy Association of British Columbia (IPABC)
Customers can look for the seals from these associations since they attest to the authenticity of these Canadian online pharmacies.
Why are Canadian Pharmacies So Popular?
Canadian Pharmacies are popular amongst consumers because of the following benefits:
- Affordable prices
One of the main things customers like about Canadian drugstores, in particular, is the bargain prices for the medicines. Most patients are sick and tired of spending hundreds to thousands of dollars for their medicines, hence them aspiring for cheaper drug options besides their local pharmacies. Luckily, most Canadian Pharmacies offer just that.
- Prescription-free purchases
Some Canadian Pharmacy stores offer no-Rx purchases of meds online, which is convenient for buyers. Patients may have already surrendered their scripts to their local drugstores and are simply looking for extra supplies of their meds.
- Wider range of medicines
Since Canadian Pharmacies source their products from suppliers all around the world, buyers are exposed to a more extensive array of medicines for various medical conditions. Some of the medicines sold by these Canadian Pharmacy stores may not be available at local drugstores due to their restrictions.
- Uncommon discount deals
Canadian Pharmacies are also more preferable than local drugstores considering the deals they offer their consumers. Unlike local drugstores, online pharmacies are more generous—buyers can expect free products, coupon codes, special discounts, and other deals that may help the buyers maximize their savings for their medications.
Although Canadian Pharmacy Stores are mostly safe, customers are still exposed to risks whenever shopping online. Because of the tons of possibilities online, buyers can get ripped off for money, sent counterfeit medications, and may have their details stolen from them.
In order to mitigate the risks of shopping online, customers should be educated on the precautions that may help them avert shopping from illegal “Canadian” online pharmacies or scam sites in general.
Buyers should prepare themselves whenever shopping online, from Canadian Pharmacy stores or not. Here are several ways to help customers lessen the risk of getting scammed online:
- Shop at home
If you’re planning to shop online, stay at home. This means that you should use your private networks while shopping online, since using public Wi-Fi makes you susceptible to cyber attacks. If you need to be outside while online shopping for medicines, make sure to use your mobile network instead.
- Use an online credit card whenever shopping online
To keep your main accounts safe, you can use an online credit card (to be issued by your bank) so hackers won’t have access to your main accounts. Also, it is important to use credit cards rather than debit cards online because it is easier to contest the erroneous charges to credit cards than the debit accounts.
- Inoculate your laptop/pc/mobile
Install antivirus, anti-malware, or anti-spyware programs to your pc so you’ll be less vulnerable to attacks. Most of these programs are free, but you can spend more if you want extra protection.
Choosing the right online drugstore to use is as important as keeping yourself safe when shopping online. Selecting the right Canadian Pharmacy to use may be tough, but it is not impossible to find a safe online drugstore that can provide cost-effective medicines for your medical concerns.
Whenever looking for a legitimate Canadian Pharmacy, you should check their reviews first. Stores with excellent third-party reports from their former customers are usually fine to use; veer away from shops without reviews or with plenty of complaints from their buyers.
CIPA Rx List of Verified Canadian Online Pharmacies
Apart from searching for reviews, you also need to verify the Canadian Pharmacy memberships claimed by the stores by searching the organization websites of CIPA, MIPA, IPABC, or CPA, whenever available.
There are always good and bad sides to everything, like Canadian Pharmacies. Although Canadian Pharmacy stores seek to give their customers the best benefits, finding legitimate Canadian online pharmacies can be challenging at times. Even if some websites are 100% legit, customers may still be scammed if they are not careful. To ensure your safety while using online pharmacies (Canadian or not), make sure to use only verified online drugstores or shops included in curated website lists like our rundown of TOP Web Pharmacies for the year.