Korean J Clin Pharm.  2016 Jun;26(2):137-149. 10.0000/kjcp.2016.26.2.137.

Survey on Pharmacist's Awareness of E-commerce for Non-prescription Medicine

Affiliations
  • 1College of Pharmacy, Chung-Ang University, Seoul 06974, Republic of Korea. udsohn@cau.ac.kr
  • 2Graduate School of Clinical Pharmacy, Sookmyung Women's University, Seoul 04310, Republic of Korea.
  • 3Jung Won University, Chungcheongbuk-do 28024, Republic of Korea. youngsil31@jwu.ac.kr

Abstract


OBJECTIVE
Online pharmacies were introduced in some countries such as United States of America or Canada. They can provide benefits to consumer because they can buy and take conveniently drugs without limitation of location or time. In Korea, online pharmacies are illegal and only pharmacists can sell drugs to consumers or patients. Therefore, we investigated the knowledge of online pharmacy and the possible problem in Korea to survey pharmacists.
METHODS
We developed questionnaire based on previous articles about online pharmacy and surveyed nation-wide pharmacists by mail or e-mail. The data was analyzed by SPSS and Microsoft Excel. P-values less than 0.05 were statistically significant.
RESULTS
175 pharmacists involved in this study. About introduction of online pharmacies, 53.1% were opposition while 10.3% were approval and 36.6% were conditional. Although online pharmacies were introduced, 46.3% pharmacists do not have a plan to start online pharmacy. However, the approval and tends about starting online pharmacies were higher in younger pharmacists (20s, 30s) (p < 0.05). The criteria of permission about opening online pharmacies were 100% pharmacist license regardless of holding off-line pharmacy. 53.7% pharmacists responded education about taking medication is impossible. When online pharmacies are introduced, 65.1% pharmacists responded traditional pharmacies are affected negatively. Pharmacists concerned that the competition with large-sized distribution corporations, reduced reliance between pharmacists and patients, illegal transaction of counterfeit drugs, increased misuse of drugs.
CONCLUSION
These results showed that Korea pharmacists have negative standard on online pharmacies. Therefore it is required to be more cautious before introducing online pharmacy and it need strict watching system and continuous education and study for safety after introducing online pharmacy.

Keyword

Drugs; internet; online pharmacy; pharmacist; public health

MeSH Terms

Americas
Canada
Counterfeit Drugs
Education
Electronic Mail
Humans
Internet
Korea
Licensure
Pharmaceutical Services, Online
Pharmacies
Pharmacists
Pharmacy
Postal Service
Public Health
United States
Counterfeit Drugs
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