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NABP's Vision for .PHARMACY Generic Top-Level Domain Provides a Secure Online Space for Pharmacy Consumers Around the World

NABP's Vision for .PHARMACY Generic Top-Level Domain Provides a Secure Online
                Space for Pharmacy Consumers Around the World

PR Newswire

MOUNT PROSPECT, Ill., April 15, 2013

MOUNT PROSPECT, Ill. , April 15, 2013 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- By ensuring
that only legitimate Internet pharmacies will be able to use its proposed
.PHARMACY domain suffix, National Association of Boards of Pharmacy® (NABP®)
intends to create a secure and trustworthy online space for consumers around
the world. Because the means to easily recognize safe online pharmacies is
important for consumers worldwide, NABP will make the new domain available to
legitimate online pharmacies and related entities that are located in the
United States as well as in other countries. In developing its .PHARMACY
proposal, NABP has partnered with international regulators, pharmacy
organizations, and law enforcement agencies that share the Association's
concern about illegal online drug sellers distributing products that endanger
patient health.

With the support of this global coalition of stakeholders, NABP applied to the
Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) to own and operate
the .PHARMACY suffix, referred to as a generic Top-Level Domain (gTLD). In its
application, NABP stated the importance of ensuring that only legitimate Web
site operators that adhere to pharmacy laws in the jurisdictions in which they
are based and to which they sell medicine will be able to register domain
names in .PHARMACY.

"The ultimate benefactors of NABP's vision for this new gTLD will be the
health care community and patients worldwide, who will be assured that all
pharmacy sites ending in the .PHARMACY gTLD are safe and legitimate," states
NABP President Michael A. Burleson, RPh. "By vetting .PHARMACY registrants for
compliance with international standards, NABP seeks to protect patients
worldwide from the health risks that can result when drug sellers circumvent
supply chain safeguards."

When medicine passes through multiple foreign countries by way of various
unknown buyers, sellers, and distributors all looking to profit, transactions
often take place without regard to regulations that are intended to ensure
patient safety. As a result of such practices, drug products of dubious
quality may enter the supply chain and are often illegally distributed by
online sellers. For example, as of January 2013, NABP had reviewed 10,275
Internet drug outlets selling prescription medications and found 9,938 Web
sites – 97% of the total number of sites reviewed – to be out of compliance
with pharmacy laws and practice standards established in the U.S. to protect
the public health. Of these 9,938 Web sites identified as Not Recommended,
nearly half offer foreign or non-Food and Drug Administration-approved drugs
to US residents, and many of these distribute dangerous counterfeits to
unsuspecting consumers. Further, health and regulatory agencies around the
world have reported cases of patients harmed by counterfeit, substandard, and
adulterated medications distributed by illegal Internet sellers.

NABP applied for the .PHARMACY gTLD in June 2012. The application was
submitted as part of ICANN's expansion of available gTLDs, which currently
include familiar suffixes such as .edu, .gov, and .com. It is expected that
results of ICANN's review process for the .PHARMACY gTLD will be released by
summer 2013. 

Stakeholders that support NABP's application include many groups in the global
pharmacy community. Among the coalition of stakeholders behind this initiative
are the Alliance for Safe Online Pharmacies, Eli Lilly and Company, European
Alliance for Access to Safe Medicines, Gilead Sciences, Inc, International
Pharmaceutical Federation, INTERPOL, Janssen Pharmaceuticals, Inc,
LegitScript, Merck/MSD, National Association of Pharmacy Regulatory
Authorities, Neustar, Inc, and the state boards of pharmacy.

For more information about NABP and the .PHARMACY application, visit 
www.nabp.net/programs/pharmacy/pharmacy-and-nabp.

NABP is the independent, international, and impartial Association that assists
its state member boards and jurisdictions in developing, implementing, and
enforcing uniform standards for the purpose of protecting the public health.

SOURCE National Association of Boards of Pharmacy

Website: http://www.nabp.net