Tips for Parents
prescription drugs available online — without a prescription!
That's where 185 websites were recently found selling prescription drugs, according to a new "You've Got Drugs' White Paper from the National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse (CASA). And 89 percent of the sites don't require a prescription!
Of those that do require a prescription, many accept faxed copies, a practice which, according to Join Together Online (July 14, 2006), opens the process up to forgery and illegally using the same scrip multiple times.
And 30 percent of the sites that don't require a prescription boast about that fact, according to CASA. "Online consultations' are offered by 60 percent and the other 10 percent don't mention anything about prescriptions.
Students are turning to illegally obtained prescription drugs as unsafe study aids. By popping pills, they believe they'll be able to stay up all night studying or finishing projects. Yet, the dangers of taking unprescribed pills are great.
The 2004 version of this White Paper research found 157 prescription drug websites. Yet the problem persists. "Despite three years of CASA reports, Congressional hearings and increased attention in the press to the abuse of controlled prescription drugs, these drugs continue to be as easy to buy over the Internet as candy,' said Bo Dietl, a researcher on the project.
As a parent of a college student, this can be nerve-wracking to hear. Unfortunately, the use and abuse of prescription meds is rampant on some college campuses. Increased national attention continues to be placed on this issue. You can help by educating your student on the dangers of unnecessarily taking prescription medications, as well as reassuring them that no grade point average or level of success is worth taking these medications without the supervision of a qualified professional.
Sources: The National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse at Columbia University News Release, June 19, 2006, www.casacolumbia.org; Join Together Online, July 14, 2006, www.jointogether.org
Valium and Xanax are the most frequently sold prescription drugs, available on 84% of the websites.
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