Tips for Safely Ordering Prescription Refills Online

Safely Ordering Prescription Refills Online offers convenience and safety. However, did you know that according to a survey conducted by the NABP, only 3.5% of online pharmacies met standards for safety and legitimacy? Health Canada has also emphasized the risks associated with illegal online drug sellers, stating that 96% of online pharmacies are not trustworthy. Therefore, it’s important to prioritize the safety and authenticity of a pharmacy while ordering prescription refills online.

In this blog, we will share valuable tips and best practices for safely ordering prescription refills online. By following these guidelines, you can protect your privacy and security, as well as reduce the risk of falling victim to fraudulent online pharmacies.


Verify the Authenticity of Online Pharmacies While Ordering Prescription Refills Online

When ordering prescription refills online, it’s crucial to ensure the legitimacy of the online pharmacy. This step is crucial to avoid counterfeit or substandard medications. 

Follow these steps:

  • Look for a physical address and phone number: Genuine online pharmacies will have a physical location and a valid contact number for customer inquiries. If it does not have a physical location, then look for the following.
  • Check for a license: Legitimate online pharmacies will prominently display their licensing information on their website. The pharmacy regulatory authority should license legitimate pharmacies, including online ones in the respective province or territory. Each province or territory in Canada has its regulatory authority that grants pharmacy licenses. Examples include the College of Pharmacists of Ontario, College of Pharmacists of British Columbia, Ordre des pharmaciens du Québec, among others. At a national level, The National Association of Pharmacy Regulatory Authorities (NAPRA) provides accreditation programs for pharmacies in Canada, ensuring they meet national standards of practice and quality. In Manitoba, the regulatory authority for pharmacies is the College of Pharmacist of Manitoba (CPhM). Additionally, each pharmacy is required to have a designated Pharmacy Manager who holds a valid Pharmacy Manager License issued by CPhM.

Please note that licensing requirements and regulatory bodies may vary by province or territory in Canada. It’s advisable to refer to the specific regulatory authority in your area for the most accurate and up-to-date information.

Prioritize Privacy and Security While Ordering Prescription Refills Online:

Protecting your personal and medical information is crucial when ordering prescription refills online. Follow these steps to protect your privacy.

  1. Use secure websites: Always order from websites that use secure connections (HTTPS) and display a padlock icon in the browser address bar. HTTPS (Hypertext Transfer Protocol Secure) encrypts the data exchanged between a website and a user’s browser, ensuring protection from unauthorized access to sensitive information, such as personal and financial details. The presence of a padlock icon in the browser indicates the website is using a secure connection, and that a trusted certificate authority has verified the website’s identity.
  2. Avoid sharing unnecessary information: Legitimate online pharmacies will only ask for necessary details such as your name, address, prescription information, and payment details. Avoid sharing excessive personal information such as SIN/SSN, driving license, or passport number. Online pharmacies may ask for payment information such as credit card details. However, providing additional financial data, such as bank account information or financial history, may not be necessary and could pose a risk to your privacy. Additionally, while it is essential to provide relevant medical information related to the prescription being sought, details about past medical conditions or those not relevant to that prescription may be a red flag.
  3. Review the privacy policy: A recent study found that 25% of the top internet pharmacies shared consumer personally identifiable information with third parties. Reviewing the pharmacy’s privacy policy is essential to understand how they will handle your information and whether they will share it with third parties.

Consult Healthcare Professionals for Guidance:

It’s important to consult healthcare professionals when ordering prescription refills online to ensure proper guidance and address any concerns or questions.

Regularly communicate with your healthcare provider: Have a trusted healthcare professional oversee your prescription refills, even when using online platforms.

Online consultations: Some online pharmacies offer virtual consultations through telemedicine platforms. Take advantage of these opportunities to speak with licensed healthcare professionals. These consultations provide an opportunity to speak with licensed healthcare professionals for personalized guidance.

Use pharmacies with pharmacist assistance: Opt for online pharmacies that have licensed pharmacists available to answer your questions and provide guidance.


Ordering prescription refills online can be safe and convenient if you follow these tips. Verifying the authenticity of online pharmacies, prioritizing privacy and security, and consulting healthcare professionals will ensure a smooth and secure experience. Remember, your health and well-being are paramount, so take these necessary precautions when getting prescription refills online.