India: new online medicine trade policy

After an increase in cases involving the sale of fake medicines online, the government has tightened current regulations to ensure the authentication of online pharmacies. According to the new Ministry of Health and Family Welfare bill, it will now be mandatory for e-pharmacies to register with a central authority and they will be restricted from selling narcotics, tranquillizers, and psychotropic drugs. The central authority will issue licenses for three years and e-pharmacies will be regulated under the 1945 Drugs and Cosmetics Rules and the 2000 Information Technology Act. The bill proposes that e-pharmacies and premises from where e-pharmacies operate will be inspected every two years. Any violations could lead to suspension or cancellation of licenses.

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