Protect Your Family From Fraudulent Flu Products
The winter flu season may soon bring out dishonest sellers marketing fraudulent products to unsuspecting consumers, who are already concerned about protecting themselves from COVID-19, said the U.S Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
These products can be found online, including popular marketplaces, and in retail stores. They may be labeled as dietary supplements, foods, hand sanitizers, nasal sprays, or devices.
To address this issue, the FDA issued a new Consumer Update on November 12, 2020, urging consumers to avoid fraudulent flu products and offering tips on how to spot them.
These unproven products, sold online and in stores, haven’t been evaluated by the FDA for safety and effectiveness.
‘Know that there are no legally marketed over-the-counter drugs to prevent, mitigate, treat, or cure the flu. But there are legal over-the-counter (OTC) drugs to reduce fever and to relieve muscle aches, congestion, and other symptoms typically associated with influenza stated this update.
The FDA said it ‘continues to take action against bad actors, as evidenced by warning letters we’ve sent to companies offering for sale medical products with fraudulent claims to prevent, mitigate, treat, or cure COVID-19.’
‘Getting a flu vaccine is the best way to prevent this infectious disease and its serious complications,’ says the FDA.
Flu is a serious disease, caused by influenza viruses, that can lead to hospitalization and even mortality.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommend that all people, ages 6 months and older, get vaccinated against influenza – particularly those at an increased risk for serious complications, including young children, adults 65 years and older, and those with chronic medical conditions.
An updated listing of authorized flu vaccines is published on this webpage.
And if you do get the flu, there are FDA-approved antiviral drugs, available by prescription, to treat the illness. These medicines are recommended by the CDC for use against recently circulating influenza viruses. They work best if started soon after the onset of symptoms, such as within 48-hours.
The various products are all approved for adult use and differ in the ages for which they are approved to treat children, ranging from 2-weeks-old to age 12.
Moreover, websites appearing to be online pharmacies selling prescription drugs present an opportunity for fraudsters to take advantage of unsuspecting consumers.
If you have a question about a vaccine, treatment, or OTC product, talk to your healthcare provider, says the FDA.
PrecisionVaccinations publishes research-based influenza news.