Duterte orders FDA, PCOO to give 'widest publicity' to accredited online sellers of meds

President Duterte has ordered to give the "widest publicity" for the list of accredited online sellers of medicines to educate the public.

President Rodrigo Duterte speaks during his “Talk to the People” public briefing that was aired on Tuesday, March 1, 2022. (RTVM Screenshot)

During a pre-recorded public address aired on Tuesday, March 1, Duterte lamented the proliferation of online sellers of fake medicines, including those who scam people.

"Itong online, there can be a lot of problems that sprout overnight dito (here) from the fake to (the) outright scam, you have to educate the public," Duterte said during the presentation of Food and Drug Administration (FDA) deputy Director Oscar Gutierrez Jr. on COVID-19 drugs.

"And as much as possible give the widest publicity doon sa mga magagamit nila sa online, yung mga accredited na botika. Hindi naman pwedeng basta basta lang (on what they can use online, the accredited stores. It should not be taken lightly)," Duterte added.

Duterte directed Presidential Communications Operations Office (PCOO) Secretary Martin Andanar to provide a timeslot in the government-owned television network to the FDA to inform the public of the legitimate and accredited sellers of medicines to avoid buying the fake ones.

"I am asking Secretary Andanar now to give you a timeslot to educate the public on how to use the online buying of medicines," he said.

The President also urged the public to not go beyond the list of accredited online stores that the government will release later on.

"You have to emphasize to them that ito lang mga (that these are only the) accredited. Do not go beyond the list that you see now," he said.

Duterte in one of his public addresses in February this year, told the public to "lay off first from buying online" due to the sprouting scammers on the web space.

He stressed that selling of fake medicine is a serious fraud, saying that those proven selling such must go to prison.

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