Goto Genri, the representative director of Kenko Com, posts a blog on Blogos covering the following topics on the sale of drugs online.
The sale of drugs online has always been a controversial topic, and the views keep changing over time. A new law will be put into place in June 2014 that will make the sale of some drugs online legal in Japan. This is a welcoming change after the sales of drugs were made illegal a few years ago. The revision is in accordance with the objectives of Prime Minister Abe and the Supreme Court, and is a large step forward towards this goal.
This new law will also categorize the 28th group of pharmaceutical drugs under a new group of drugs as “medications that require guidance”, allowing the online sales to be categorized. The 28th group of medications requires the guidance by a licensed pharmacist before they can be sold online.
The real problem here is that no expertise or scientific proof was presented to govern the sale of this group of drugs. This particular decision will most certainly affect future decisions regarding other upcoming online services, which might be viewed negatively and might be restricted without any reasonable arguments.
A nation that allows interest groups to influence government and decisions has no future. Moreover, interest groups may find it easier now now to get services banned that they do not approve of. Since these interest groups now have new strength, they may not only have the ability to limit consumer choice, they may also limit the freedom of innovators, especially those of the younger generation.
However, this is not an end to the revisions of the Pharmaceutical Affairs Law, there must be continuous movement to change the law for the better. Although the battle will be long, it is a battle that must continue for the required results.