In keeping with the Association’s mission to protect the public health, each of the NABP accreditation and approval programs include requirements to help ensure patients and beneficiaries receive quality care and products. In 2011, entities including durable medical equipment, prosthetics, orthotics, and supplies (DMEPOS) suppliers, Internet pharmacies, and wholesale distributors continued to seek the appropriate accreditation or approval to comply with state and federal requirements or to distinguish their company as a provider of high quality products and services.
By December 31, 2011, over 500 wholesaler facilities had been accredited by the VAWD® (Verified-Accredited Wholesale Distributors®) program since its launch in 2004. Contributing to this milestone, at least 20 states recognize VAWD accreditation, with some requiring VAWD as a prerequisite for licensure. As several entities continue to seek VAWD accreditation or reaccreditation to comply with state requirements, the total number of accreditations has steadily climbed from only 32 in 2006 to 512, with 123 new accreditations and 82 reaccreditations in 2011.
The DMEPOS accreditation program has assisted numerous pharmacies seeking to meet Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services DMEPOS requirements. Since 2006, the DMEPOS program has accredited over 1,000 companies representing more than 29,000 facilities. DMEPOS continues to receive a steady number of applications, resulting in 75 new accreditations and four reaccreditations in 2011. The enactment of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, which extended the deadline for pharmacies to be accredited to January 1, 2011, likely contributed to the higher number of accreditations in 2010.
For over 12 years, the VIPPS® (Verified Internet Pharmacy Practice SitesCM) program has accredited Internet pharmacies that meet a comprehensive set of criteria, including compliance with state and federal laws and regulations. Further, in 2011, several print, Internet, and prime time television news stories including 60 Minutes, Dr Oz, and The Doctors, have raised awareness about rogue Internet drug outlet risks and highlighted the value of the VIPPS Seal, which represents the gold standard for Internet pharmacies, for a wider consumer audience.
In 2011, VIPPS and Vet-VIPPS® (Veterinary-Verified Internet Pharmacy Practice SitesCM) newly accredited six and eight Internet pharmacies, respectively. In addition, one VIPPS Internet pharmacy was reaccredited. By the end of 2011, a total of 29 Internet pharmacy sites representing more than 12,000 pharmacies were VIPPS accredited and 16 Internet pharmacies were Vet-VIPPS accredited.
The NABP e-Advertiser ApprovalCM Program targets Internet advertisers that offer only limited pharmacy services or other prescription drug-related services online. A total of 21 entities sought and obtained NABP e-Advertiser Approval since the launch of this program in 2010, with seven newly approved entities and eight reapproved entities in 2011.