National Consumers League

Beware of H1N1 Scams


With the increasing need for H1N1 flu vaccinations, the popularity of H1N1-related flu scams has also increased. More than 75 Web sites have been found selling fraudulent products claiming to diagnose, prevent, or treat H1N1, a reminder that we need to be careful to check that all products are Food and Drug Administration (FDA)-approved. The products you buy may not only be without any real medicinal value, but could also harm your health. It’s a good idea to talk with your health care practitioner if you have questions about medications to treat or prevent the flu. The FDA recently issued an alert explaining the steps they are taking to prevent H1N1 fraud, providing more information regarding what to do if you think you are being scammed, which products are FDA-approved, and which products have already been identified as scams. The FDA sent letters to the companies caught selling fake products, warning them to stop selling the fraudulent products or face legal action. The Kentucky Pharmacists Association has also released information regarding a specific site selling fraudulent “swine flu treatments.” If you think you or someone you know has fallen prey to an H1N1 scam, you should contact the FDA immediately. For more information on counterfeit drugs and how to buy drugs safely see NCL’s Fraud Center’s Web site