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— Website Caters to Consumers Wanting 'Lifestyle' Drugs Without Visiting Their Doctor

  WHITE PLAINS, NEW YORK — MONDAY, JUNE 6, 2005 — announced today that a Utah-based online pharmacy — — that sells medications without requiring an original prescription from the patient's doctor has achieved its highest rating. is the only online prescribing website in the United States that has that has won explicit approval from a state to dispense medication based on a remote medical consultation. The online pharmacy sells only four medications, three are for erectile dysfunction — Cialis, Levitra, and Viagra — and the other is for hair loss — Propecia.

In a remote consultation, the doctor reviews a patient's self-provided medical history and, if appropriate, prescribes medication. Anonymity and convenience are the allure of remote consultation sites compared to going to the doctor for an evaluation. uses advanced medical diagnostic software when evaluating patients remotely. This special process is a critical reason for it being exempt from Utah's laws that otherwise require prescriptions to be based on face-to-face doctor-patient relationships. was able to verify that met the five criteria needed to achieve its highest rating: requires a prescription to fill orders, maintains a current pharmacy license, provides contact information on its site, publishes a privacy policy that protects personal information, and transmits financial transactions securely. In addition, verified the medical license of a physician that provides consultations for customers. does not charge a fee for the prescribing physician, but its prices incorporate the cost of the remote consultation and are therefore generally higher than those from pharmacies that do not include the consultation and require an original prescription. Consumers can now compare's prices to many other online pharmacies from Canada, U.S., and elsewhere at

Among the 48 online pharmacies currently rated on, five others do not require a customer's original prescription, but none of these have achieved's highest rating. Three of these don't require a prescription at all (two fill prescriptions in Mexico and one in Fiji). Two others require a remote consultation and prescription but was unable to verify the affiliation of one with a licensed pharmacy and the other displays a non-working phone number. In addition, for these two, the medical licenses of their affiliated doctors could not be verified.

"In general, consumers should be wary of pharmacies that do not require original prescriptions from their doctors," said's presdient and founder, Tod Cooperman, MD. "Such pharmacies may be illegal and/or lack safeguards intended to protect a patient's health. is an exception, being in compliance with legal requirements and providing essential safeguards. As with a face-to-face visit to a doctor, it is particularly important that people be truthful in the medical information they provided during a remote consultation. A false medical history can lead to an inappropriate prescription."

Visitors to can freely access pharmacy ratings, in-depth pharmacy profiles, and comparisons of recent prices on over 1,000 brand name and generic drugs. The book,'s Guide to Low-Cost Canadian and U.S. Pharmacies, is also available and can be ordered direct from 800-431-1579. is privately held and based in White Plains, New York. It has no ownership in or from companies that sell or distribute pharmacy products.