PRESCRIPTIONS and MEDICATIONS
It is our policy to take every possible measure to ensure that our patients receive the very best pharmaceutical products available. We offer a wide range of medications in our full in-house pharmacy; and in cases, of which, we may not have a specific medication – we offer our own online pharmacy OR we can provide you with a written prescription for a local human pharmacy.
We also work with a local compounding pharmacy to provide flavored medications in various forms, including flavored chews, flavored liquids, or in some cases, transdermal gels that are applied to the skin inside the ear flap. These medications can be very helpful in difficult-to-treat patients.
In accordance with guidelines from the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA), there must be a valid veterinarian-client-patient relationship (meaning: current exam within the past 12 months AND a current understanding of the problem being treated) and the medication must be deemed the appropriate therapy by the attending veterinarian. For some medications, follow-up evaluations or monitoring lab work are necessary to ensure that the medication is appropriate and to minimize health risks to the patient.
We are fully aware that several internet businesses sell prescription products at prices which may be lower than our prices. You may purchase from these internet businesses, but a.) we caution you to be an informed consumer prior to making your purchase and b.) we do not authorize third-party online prescriptions. Instead of authorizing online prescriptions, you may request a written prescription; and once authorized, you may pick-up the written prescription at our Hospital at your earliest convenience and thereafter, submit to your choice of pharmacy at your discretion. PLEASE NOTE: For all in-house prescription refills and written prescription requests, please allow 48 hours to allow our veterinary team to review your pet’s medical record and complete this process accurately.
Major pharmaceutical manufacturers maintain a strict policy of sales exclusively through licensed veterinarians. Unless the internet pharmacy is owned by a veterinarian, all internet sales of these products are through non-approved channels. Pharmaceutical manufacturers will only honor product guarantees when medications are prescribed by and purchased from a veterinarian. This includes reimbursement programs like Heartgard, which offers to cover a portion of heartworm treatment if your pet is diagnosed with heartworms, while being current on Heartgard Heartworm prevention and with proof a prior history of remaining current.
Any prescription medication purchased from our hospital has been inspected and approved by the FDA and is manufactured and packaged according to US government regulations. Our prescriptions (including medication, concentration, and administration instructions) are reviewed by a veterinarian to minimize errors. In addition, since we keep close track of medications dispensed to your pet, we can inform you immediately of any product recalls or health concerns involving your pet’s medications
CAUTION WITH THIRD-PARTY INTERNET PHARMACIES
Here at Raleigh Community Animal Hospital, our clients always have the option of having a written prescription filled at an internet pharmacy. However, because of the increasing number of internet pharmacies, we cannot determine if a specific internet pharmacy is a safe, ethical, and legal provider of medications.
Some medications sold on-line:
• are fake (counterfeit or “copycat” medications);
• are too strong or too weak; • have dangerous ingredients;
• have expired;
• aren’t FDA approved (haven’t been checked for safety and effectiveness);
• aren’t made using safe standards;
• aren’t safe to use with other medications your pet uses;
• aren’t labeled, stored, or shipped correctly;
• aren’t sold by websites that will protect your personal information;
• aren’t sold by US state-licensed pharmacies or any pharmacies at all.
Always look closely at medication ordered from an internet pharmacy: Two notes of inspection upon receiving your medication - 1.) do not use a product if it does not have this warning printed on the box or label: caution: Federal law restricts this drug to use by or on the order of a licensed veterinarian should be printed on the box or label. and 2.) do not use a product if the original seal is not present.
LAST TIP ON USING THIRD-PARTY INTERNET VETERINARY PHARMACIES
Although some pharmaceutical websites operate legally, there are some that do not. Always check an internet pharmacy’s reputation by looking for the VIPPS seal of approval. VIPPS stands for Verified Internet Pharmacy Practice Sites. It is a service of the National Association of Boards of Pharmacy. The VIPPS website (www.nabp.net) lists qualifying on-line pharmacies.