EU group slams proposed online pharmacy logo

EU proposed logoA European pharmacist trade group has criticised plans to use the medical cross to identify legal online drug retailers.

The European Commission (EC) proposed two logos, both featuring a medical cross (see image for one variant), to satisfy requirements in the falsified medicines directive for a shared signifier of online pharmacies. Use of the cross has drawn criticism from the Pharmaceutical Group of the European Union (PGEU).

PGEU notes the medical cross is trademarked in some European nations , notably France, and reserved for sellers of prescription medicines in others. Many of the websites that will display the logo will only sell non-prescription drugs though due to national restrictions.

PGEU proposed logoThe link between the cross and sales of prescription drugs - in law and the minds of patients - therefore makes it unsuitable for the job, PGEU argues. PGEU proposes replacing the cross with a pill or capsule.

"It is crucial that the integrity of medical and pharmacy symbols is protected. Consumers in some Member States are free to buy non-prescription medicines online if they wish, but they should be clear about the nature of the seller," John Chave, PGEU secretary general, said.

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