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ShopTalk Discoveries Updates Ideas FAQ Tools Books PR Communication Circle



shopbag.gif (1200 bytes) International

shopbag.gif (1200 bytes) New Auctions to Win

shopbag.gif (1200 bytes)Shopping on America Online

shopbag.gif (1200 bytes)  Drugstores

Here are some online drugstores we’ve discovered since we sent our book out to production. Let us know if you have a favorite we ought to know about, and—eventually—we will go take a look, and if we like it, add it to our Discoveries. Thanks—Jonathan and Lisa

thumbup.gif (947 bytes)   AARP Pharmacy Service

A reassuring site for prescriptions. Run by the American Association of Retired Persons, the pharmacy honors more than 2,500 prescription plans, including all the big ones. You can get a quote in advance, by filling out their Prescription Savings Request Form. You can also sign up for the AARP-sanctioned prescription plan, which can save you, they claim, an average of $7.26 per prescription when you shop at a local pharmacy.

When you turn to over-the-counter drugstore items, though, this is a, well, rather restrained site, with not very many products, and not very much information about each product. Their best prices are on generic substitutes for brand-name prescription drugs. (Their brand-name prices are so-so).

Yes, you can shop here even if you are not a member of the American Association of Retired Persons, but it helps to be a member (for $10), because in that case you can pay after delivery.

Search: Yes. Good index, too.
Ordering: Online, Phone, Fax, Mail
Delivery: Ground (for $1, no matter how many items you order), or UPS or FedEx 2nd Day (for $13.95)
Discovery: August, 1999

thumbup.gif (947 bytes)    Marcia's Confidential Healthcare Store

When Marcia says confidential, she means plain brown wrappers, and no revealing info on the package, which comes free in a week or so. She has a lot of products that you may not want other folks to know you are ordering, such as condoms, feminine hygiene items, home test kits for pregnancy or HIV infection, sexual aids, weight-loss products, and yeast infection medications.

To give you an idea of their focus: current specials include Astroglide Personal Lubricant, 2.3 ounce size, $7.19; Lact Aid Extra Strength Caplets, 4x50, for $39.80, and a bottle of 60 300mg tablets of St. John's Wort for $12.50.

Search: Yes
Ordering: Online, Phone, Email
Delivery: Ground
Discovery: September, 1999

thumbup.gif (947 bytes)

A friendly site with an appealing green menu on the side, offering lots of different ways to dip into their stock of vitamins, minerals, and supplements. They arrange their products around your goals, such as energy and vitality, fitness, and men's health, or around the body systems that may be suffering (bones and joints, brain and memory, immune system).

Check out the page listing their current best sellers. The day we visited, we found odorless garlic, glucosamine, grapeseed, melatonin, milk thistle, and something called Sleep-a-Weigh (TM), a collection of amino acids that release growth hormones while you sleep to help combat aging and obesity. No wonder this is number one! Despite the rather optimistic claims for this substance, the description gives a very thorough analysis, so you can decide for yourself, rather than taking their word for its possibilities.

The site provides plenty of info, links to for books about alternative health, and links to articles from places such as the Mayo Clinic ("Liver enzymes"), ("Real Men Do Eat Low-Fat Quiche"), OnHealth ("Mosquitoes are Picky Eaters"), and HealthScout ("Pleasure Kills Pain").

Search: Yes
Ordering: Online, Phone, Fax, Email
Delivery: Ground
Discovery: September, 1999

Dubious Discoveries

thumbdown.gif (952 bytes)   Men's Health Online

This store claims it can beat any competitor on the price of Viagra. They do start off with a warning that Viagra may cause death or "serious health consequences" for people taking certain medications, people with hypertension, heart problems, or retinitis pigmentosa. But that warning is part of a disclaimer you have to agree to, which frees them from any responsibility if you keel over or die from abusing Viagra. They offer this remedy for male erectile tissue disfunction, as Pfizer calls it, without requiring you see a physician.

The gimmick is an online medical consultation that segues into an order form. The fill-in-the-blanks form costs $75, and when, amazingly enough, you get OK'd, the pills will cost ten bucks each, with small discounts above 30 pills.

Note: This site has nothing to do with the excellent magazine called Men's Health, which is at The magazine gives away lots of good information, and sells, well, subscriptions.

Dubious Discovery: September, 1999

thumbdown.gif (952 bytes)  Walgreens Online Pharmacy

Lame service: you can set up automatic refills for prescriptions at your local Walgreens, by filling out a form online.

No sales online; just plugs for the local outlets. This site is just a teaser for the physical stores.

One good aspect: they post drug info such as common uses, how to take the medicine, cautions, side effects, and (sometimes) pictures of the medication itself.

Dubious Discovery: September, 1999

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