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Boots launch erectile dysfunction service

From Wednesday 14 February 2007 (National Impotence Day) three Boots stores in Manchester will be piloting an innovative new service for men with erectile dysfunction.
The Boots Pharmacy+ Erectile Dysfunction Programme means that for the first time men will be able to be supplied a prescription only medicine for the treatment of erectile dysfunction directly from a Boots pharmacist.
The programme is suitable for men aged 30-65 who are suffering from erectile dysfunction. Patients wishing to join the programme will have a detailed consultation with a pharmacist in a private consultation area. The pharmacist has been trained to follow a strict protocol to assess a patient's suitability for the medicine. The pharmacist will take a medical history and establish their symptoms of erectile dysfunction as well as checking their blood pressure, cholesterol and blood glucose levels. The consultation also takes into account any other medications or medical conditions the patient may have that would affect their suitability for the medicine.
The patient must be registered with a GP in the UK and agree for their GP to be informed. As an extra step, the patient will have a consultation with a private doctor, arranged by Boots, in order for a further medical and physical examination to take place to assess their suitability for a continued supply of the erectile dysfunction treatment from Boots.
Boots director of healthcare, Alex Gourlay, said: "This programme is a real innovation in access to treatment of erectile dysfunction in the UK. By creating a service that is easily accessible on the high street we hope that we help many more men seek help for a very common condition. It's estimated that currently only 10% of the 3 million men who suffer with erectile dysfunction are currently being treated.  We believe that offering this programme will improve access to treatment and give wider choice to patients.
This programme also shows the potential that pharmacy has to extend treatment and advice on healthcare to patients with a wide range of conditions."
Boots medical director, Dr Graham Marshall, said: "Boots has been developing this programme for over two years and we have consulted senior medical personnel and an external panel of medical experts and patient groups. We have developed training and a protocol to enable us to offer this service from our pharmacy.
Erectile dysfunction can often be a marker for a more serious underlying medical condition, and we believe this programme will also act as a men's health screen, so we can refer patients back to their GP for further investigation if appropriate."
The Boots Pharmacy+ Erectile Dysfunction Programme costs £50 for the initial screening and supply of four tablets. £37.50 for the private doctor consultation and then from £21.25 for 4 tablets for further supply .
The programme will be piloted in three Boots pharmacies in Manchester: Boots Trafford Centre; Boots Market Street Manchester; and Boots Merseyway Stockport. National roll out will be assessed later in the year.