The National Association of Boards of Pharmacy® (NABP®) announced today that the first Veterinary-Verified Internet Pharmacy Practice Sites™ (Vet-VIPPS™) accreditation has been awarded to VetRxDirect, Inc. Online veterinary pharmacy practice sites that obtain Vet-VIPPS accreditation exhibit their willingness to operate legitimately, assuring animal care providers that they are purchasing drugs and devices from a facility that meets the licensing requirements of the state in which the facility is based and each state to which it dispenses pharmaceuticals.
“NABP is pleased to award the first Vet-VIPPS accreditation to VetRxDirect,” states NABP President Rich Palombo, RPh. “The facility has demonstrated unwavering commitment to complying with all Vet-VIPPS criteria and is dedicated to meeting the patient/client safety practice standards.”
VetRxDirect was incorporated in Iowa in 2007. NuCara Management Group (a pharmacy management group) created VetCara, LLC, and partnered with a local Iowa City veterinarian to provide legal online veterinary pharmacy services to the marketplace. Following completion of its Web site design, VetRxDirect launched operations in January 2008 honoring what it calls the foundation of the veterinary profession: the doctor/client/patient relationship. The facility offers only non-controlled veterinary prescriptions and over-the-counter products and is committed to providing its clients with a secure online shopping experience.
“VetRxDirect is honored to be accredited as a Vet-VIPPS pharmacy by NABP. We will take this accreditation seriously, and we will continue to foster a closer relationship between the veterinarian, patient, and pharmacy. The Vet-VIPPS accreditation is very important to us. It helps our customers understand that we are appropriately licensed and comply with all federal and state laws and regulations. It also helps in the trust-building process with veterinarians who provide the prescriptions for their clients’ pets,” says T.J. Johnsrud, president of VetCara, LLC. “The Vet-VIPPS accreditation process from the National Association of Boards of Pharmacy will help all state pharmacy boards deal with the multiple issues involved in the licensing of online veterinary pharmacies. It should also help veterinarians clarify the advice that they give their clients.”
Launched by NABP in January 2009, the Vet-VIPPS program provides a vehicle for evaluating and accrediting legitimately operating online veterinary pharmacy practice sites in an effort to protect companion animals as well as non-food producing animals. It is designed to assist the states in their efforts to maintain control over the Internet-based distribution of prescription drugs and devices for these animals.
Vet-VIPPS is an expansion of the NABP VIPPS® program, which was established in 1999 after a coalition of state and federal regulatory associations, professional associations, and consumer advocacy groups provided their expertise to develop criteria for accredited Internet pharmacies to follow. This year, the VIPPS program celebrates its 10th anniversary.
Pharmacies displaying the Vet-VIPPS Seal on their Web sites have demonstrated to NABP their compliance with Vet-VIPPS criteria including patient rights to privacy, authentication and security of prescription orders, adherence to a recognized quality assurance policy, and provision of meaningful consultation between clients and pharmacists. By clicking on the Seal, a visitor is linked to the NABP Vet-VIPPS site where verified information about the pharmacy is maintained by NABP. The public is also welcome to access the Vet-VIPPS site to search for a Vet-VIPPS Internet pharmacy that matches their needs.
More information about the Vet-VIPPS program criteria and applications for accreditation are available in the Accreditation Programs section of the NABP Web site at www.nabp.net.