Buying drugs from Canada cheaply

Posted at 10:36 PM, Feb 10, 2017
and last updated 2017-02-11 00:35:59-05

President Trump says he's going to go after the drug manufacturing companies and hold them accountable for their prices.

But many drugs have already skyrocketed in price for no apparent reason. So, what can you do?

Some say your best bet comes from Canada. Six On Your Side show you how much you can save and how to do it as safely as possible. A new administration, an affordable care act on the ropes  and a series of sudden and massive increases in certain prescription drug prices. What's a health care user to do?

"In this country, around 15-20 percent go to Canada for drugs." says Dr. Robin Dodson, professor of biomedical and pharmaceutical sciences at Idaho State University. He says legitimate Canadian pharmacies offer almost all of the same drugs as the US at a fraction of the price.

We asked Dodson if there's any difference between drugs in the US and Canada. " None!" he replied, "They're identical.  The difference is they cost 35-55 percent less." That's because the US is the only developed country with no price controls on drugs. But if you buy from Canada, you have to do your homework carefully. If you don't, Dodson says, "It could kill you."

The first thing to do is make sure your chosen pharmacy is certified by the Canadian International Pharmacy Association... "We are probably the gold standard for online pharmacies having been around as long as we have." says CIPA GM Tim Smith.

"CIPA members serve one million people a year in the US." continues Smith,  "As a matter of fact, in the state of Idaho we serve five thousand on a regular basis." A prescription is required and controlled substances are not allowed.

Smith Says, "We mostly provide maintenance medications for people with chronic conditions."
Drugs like statins or insulin, some of the most prescribed drugs around can have savings as high as 80 percent.
But is CIPA as good as the FDA?

"we have a 100 percent perfect safety record," says Smith. CIPA pharmacy is facing an indictment for it's bulk prescription practices, but has yet to be convicted. And US pharmacies are not perfect either. Bottom line if you can't afford your drugs in the US, Dodson says Canada is a legitimate option.

"Absolutely..  All you have to do is take a few extra steps, a little more time and effort and you'll get the same product for a lot less.." Many websites will hijack the CIPA seal to try to fool you. So, whatever pharmacy you use, make sure to check it with the list of certified CIPA pharmacies. provides a full list of 65 member pharmacies.