Drug sale violations rife in first day online

Kyodo

The legalization of online sales of nonprescription drugs has given rise to 306 violations in about 24 hours, the government said Friday.

The Health, Labor and Welfare Ministry will order retailers to rectify the illegal activity, which includes failing to post images of their drug stores on their websites.

The ban on online sales of nonprescription drugs was lifted Thursday. The revision to the pharmaceutical affairs law requires retailers to post their locations, license numbers and images of their premises online when selling pharmaceuticals over the Internet.

The ministry identified 632 stores as having launched websites offering online drug sales on Thursday. They are among 1,028 stores that filed Internet-based drug sales plans with the ministry in May.

By the end of the month, the ministry had eliminated 35 websites suspected as breaching the pharmaceutical affairs law. Most were based overseas, offering drugs that have yet to be approved in Japan.