ONLINE selling platforms Shopee Philippines and Lazada Philippines have been ordered to cease and desist from selling medicines online.
In a statement, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) said it has served and implemented a Summons with Preventive Measure Order (SPMO) which directed Shopee and Lazada to stop selling pharmaceutical products online.
Shopee and Lazada risk being cited for direct or indirect contempt and/or other administrative sanctions if they continue.
The FDA said the cease-and-desist order will be in effect until the concerned companies have secured the appropriate License to Operate (LTO) from the FDA.
"Shopee Philippines and Lazada Philippines are strictly mandated to observe compliance," the agency added.
The SPMO was served a couple of days after the FDA issued Advisory No. 2019-154 on June 11, which warned the public about the possible health risks posed by medicines sold via the internet.
The agency stressed that the continuous online selling of any drug products will place the lives of the general public in danger and at risk.
"The FDA warns the public to exercise extreme caution and to avoid purchasing/consuming health products offered for sale online," reiterated the FDA.
The agency also called on the public to report continuous unauthorized online sale or distribution of drug products to firstname.lastname@example.org, or through the online reporting facility, eREPORT, at www.fda.gov.ph/ereport, or to call the Center for Drug Regulation and Research at telephone number (02) 809-5596. (HDT/SunStar Philippines)