Sure, you can save up to half the price of brand-name drugs if you buy from pharmacies outside the U.S. But importing medications from any country except Canada is illegal. In Canada, purchases must be made in person with a valid U.S. prescription approved by a Canadian doctor.

That legal exception does not extend to buying Canadian drugs over the Internet. It's illegal to order drugs from Canada online, but U.S. Customs and Border Protection says it will no longer routinely seize packages of non-narcotic prescription drugs mailed from Canadian pharmacies. It will, however, continue to conduct random searches for counterfeit medications.

Thomas M. Anderson
25 December 2007

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