British cancer patients buy drugs online

November 6, 2006

Cancer patients in Britain are using the Internet for cheaper drugs, often without their doctor's knowledge, a cancer specialist said.

As a result, the physician said, patients are self-prescribing cancer treatments by ordering drugs online after learning about new therapies, The London Observer said. Some treatments haven't licensed by the Britain's National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence but are available online.

Cancer specialist Karol Sikora said the patients are informed and shop online, primarily Canadian Web sites, for the cheapest price, the Guardian said. He said patients don't accept that "you can't get a cancer drug that will extend your life because a government body has decreed you can't have it," the Observer said.

Cancer specialists can urge patients not to go to Internet suppliers for their drugs, the Guardian said. The Royal Pharmaceutical Society of Great Britain, a pharmacies organization, has been developing patient worksheets on determining whether an online pharmacy is safe and regulated but the tips apply to British-registered pharmacies, the Guardian said.

Copyright 2006 by United Press International

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