Brits Will Now Be Able to Buy Viagra Over the Counter


The UK is to become the first country where Viagra can be bought over the counter, in an attempt to curtail the trade in unlicensed or counterfeit products.

Men over the age of 18 will be able to buy Viagra Connect from a pharmacy from next spring. UK Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency has allowed pharmacies to sell viagra over-the-counter after a public consultation. A four-pack of the drug, the formal name for which is Sildenafil, will cost around £20 ($27).

U.S. pharmaceutical company Pfizer has spent nearly a decade fighting to get an over-the-counter designation for Viagra in the UK, Fortune magazine says, and has also tried to get the European Union to approve a change to the drug's current prescription-only status.

The Mirror reports that now, there is a £10m a year black market for Viagra, with many unlicensed and counterfeit drugs being sold online. They'll be able to discuss usage and any potential side effects, but may still refer people to a GP for further assessment if deemed necessary.

The drug has been reclassified in a bid to help those who wish to take it to do so safely.

Pharmacists will not sell the drug to men with severe cardiovascular disorders, high cardiovascular risk or severe kidney failure, or those taking specific interacting medications.

The decision to change regulations of the drug follows an investigation by Sky News conducted earlier this month, which found "black market" erectile dysfunction pills now account for "90% of all captured counterfeit drugs".

Currently, men suffering from erectile dysfunction have to see their GP before obtaining a prescription. Use of Viagra Connect in these groups of men must continue to be under the supervision of a doctor. "The move to make Viagra Connect more widely accessible will encourage men to seek help within the healthcare system and increase awareness of erectile dysfunction". 'Erectile dysfunction can be a debilitating condition, so it's important men feel they have fast access to quality and legitimate care, and do not turn to counterfeit supplies'.