Local News

Morrisville Company Says Cipro Flying Off Its Cyber Shelves

Posted October 25, 2001 6:35 a.m. EDT

— The demand for Cipro is a business boon to an Internet company in Morrisville.

Patients around the country are logging on to Virtual Medical Group and requesting Cipro, the antibiotic used to treat anthrax. The company puts patients in touch with doctors, who may then write the prescription.

The prescriptions are often filled at the company's pharmacy in Morrisville. The company has been filling up to 100 prescriptions a day, but the

North Carolina Medical Board

is deeply skeptical.

"Let's put it this way, a lot of what's happening on the Internet when it comes to prescribing is just an outright sham," said Andrew Watry of the North Carolina Medical Board. "A physician should not be writing prescriptions for a patient that he or she has never seen."

"I think those people don't really understand our business and the safeguard that we've put in place, and that patients want to access physicians in the privacy of their own homes for these non-emergent conditions," said Tania Malik of Virtual Medical Group.

Just this week, Virtual Medical Group temporarily stopped using doctors in North Carolina to write prescriptions. The decision came after the North Carolina Medical Board went to the company and began investigating.

The North Carolina Medical Board plans to take action soon against doctors in the state who have been writing prescriptions over the Internet.