Internet-only Pharmacies Approved in England

The UK government has approved internet-only pharmacies in England under changes to the laws governing pharmacies in general, as a result of an Office of Fair Trading report. Whilst some pharmacies already sell medicines online, they must have a physical store to trade legally – the changes to the law mean that internet-only chemists will soon be available for the first time.

The Department of Health is assuring the public that there will be strict rules enforced to ensure quality of service and safety.

Health Minister Rosie Winterton said “These reforms continue to support the Government’s aim to put the needs of patients first, ensuring that local health services reflect the changing lifestyles and needs of patients.”

Whilst it’s a great idea in principle, some internet users may mistake spam and some less reputable online services offering medicines as legitimate organisations. It will take public education and strict policing to ensure that members of the public do not put themselves at risk.

Office of Fair Trading

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Fraser Lovatt

Fraser Lovatt has spent the last fifteen years working in publishing, TV and the Internet in various capacities, and believes that they will be seperate platforms for at least a while yet. His main interests at the moment are exploring where Linux is taking home entertainment and how technology is conferring technical skills on more and more people. Fraser Lovatt was born in the same year that 2001: A Space Odyssey was delighting and confusing people in the cinemas, and developed a lifelong love of technology as soon as he realised that things could be taken apart, sometimes put back together again, but mostly left in bits or made into something the original designer hadn't quite planned upon. At school he was definitely in the ZX Spectrum/Magpie/BMX camp, rather than the BBC Micro/Blue Peter/well-behaved group. This is all deeply ironic as he later went on to spend nine years working at the BBC. After a few years of working as a bookseller in Scotland, ("Back when it was actually a skilled profession" he'll tell anyone still listening), he moved to England for reasons he can't quite explain adequately to himself. After a couple of publishing jobs punctuated by sporadic bursts of travelling and photography came the aforementioned nine years at the BBC where he specialised in internet technologies and video. These days his primary interests are Java, Linux, videogames and pies - and if they're not candidates for convergence, then what is?