Advertising Standards Authority upholds complaints about Pharmacy2U advertising

18 Jul 2018

The Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) has upheld complaints by the National Pharmacy Association and others about recent claims by an online pharmacy, Pharmacy2U.

The watchdog says that Pharmacy2U had not been able to substantiate its claim that the NHS would currently save £300 million per year or more, if a significant proportion of the population switched to online repeat prescription services such as theirs.  It concluded that the claims “Saving… the NHS over £300 million a year on prescription costs” and “better for the NHS” were misleading and had not been substantiated.


An NPA spokesperson said:


“We welcome the ASA’s verdict which acknowledges our concerns about the misleading claims made by Pharmacy2U in their advertising. People’s choices about where to obtain their NHS medicines ought not to be skewed by misleading and unsubstantiated claims. Neither should local community pharmacies be put at a disadvantage by such advertisements. At heart, this is about informed choice for patients and fairness for all pharmacies. The ASA ruling is a clear vindication of the NPA’s position, upholding our view that Pharmacy2U’s claims were misleading and unsubstantiated, and telling them not to run the ads again.”


The ruling relates to a Twitter ad and two TV ads, in November and December 2017.  The ruling means that the ads must not appear again in their current form.


The full ruling can be viewed here