As is often the case when a particular issue becomes the focus of national attention, there’s been a recent outburst of products that aren’t just ineffective in fighting the flu and the H1N1 virus, they might actually be harmful.
The federal Food and Drug Administration has sent out a warning to consumers, pointing out the potential harm of unapproved products that claim to prevent, fight, or diagnose the infamous H1N1 flu virus. To get a rundown on potentially bogus products, check out the FDA’s interactive widget at the bottom of this post.
In the run-up to flu season, and the wait for H1N1 vaccines, the very contagious flu virus has captured the nation’s attention. And in doing so, it has brought in a series of questionable products that are not FDA-approved. According to the FDA, consumers should buy only approved products from licensed pharmacies. Tamiflu and Relenza are the only two FDA-approved antiviral drugs of H1N1.
If you buy a prescription drug from a Web site or other unapproved source, you run the risk of potential life-threatening side effects from bad medication, or dangerous drug interactions. The FDA has been aggressively pursuing Web dealers, but they continue to pop up.
As with most medical situations, discuss your concerns with your pharmacist or doctor, and make sure you buying medication from a legitimate, trusted source. And remember, wash your hands early and often with anti-bacterial soap or sanitizer, the best way to fight off germs during the upcoming flu season.
How to Combat Illegal Robocalls posted on Jul 25
Robocalls have become an all-too-common nuisance for consumers. Robocalls are unsolicited, pre-recorded phone calls, often scams, which are made to consumers without their permission, as opposed to calls solicited by the consumer, such as those from pharmacies and childrens’ schools. Robocalls are illegal in Massachusetts under M.G.L. c. 159C. While consumers can, and should, sign-up -for both the state and national Do-Not-Call lists, unfortunately this does not always stop many unscrupulous solicitors and scammers from making these calls.
Summary of the 2015 Consumer Federation of America Annual Consumer Complaint Survey posted on Jul 22
The Consumer Federation of America and the North American Consumer Protection Investigators recently released the results of the 2015 Consumer Complaint Survey. This report is based on consumer information, complaints, and suggestions for increased consumer protections from 33 consumer agencies in 21 states.
Do-Not-Call Consumer & Solicitor Responsibilities posted on Jul 20
The Massachusetts Do-Not-Call Registry allows consumers to stop receiving certain telephone solicitations simply by signing-up and providing their telephone number. Established in 2003, the law requires telephone solicitors, list-brokers, and telemarketers to register with the Office of Consumer Affairs and Business Regulation, subscribe to the Do-Not-Call Registry, and remove registered telephone numbers of consumers from their call lists.