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Thursday 9th June 2011
Immediate release

NHS urged to provide better online services to tackle men’s health problems

In Men’s Health Week 2011, the Men’s Health Forum is calling on the NHS to develop a range of internet services, including male-targeted health information and the ability to make GP appointments online and to take part in online consultations, to improve the health of men.

The Men’s Health Forum, (MHF), the leading male health charity which runs Men’s Health Week (June 13th to19th), says digital technologies provide a new and significant opportunity to reach men who find it difficult to use traditional health services such as general practice and pharmacies. Over 42% of men still die before the age of 75 (compared to 26% of women), but they visit their GP 20% less frequently than women and are slower to be diagnosed with serious conditions.

The call will be made at the launch event on Monday (June 13th) at Tottenham Hotspur Football Club, with Tottenham Hotspur Foundation hosting the event. There are five key objectives for Men’s Health Week:

• Encouraging men to make better use of the internet as an easy-to-access option for health information – MHF believes that 50% of UK men should be using the internet to access health information within two years (up from 34% in 2010).
• The NHS should develop a range of communication tools, including digital technologies, when considering the information needs of men and should encourage the provision of online booking and consulting with GPs
• All (relevant) health information websites should contain specific and targeted men’s health content
• Men should be proactively consulted by GP Consortia and Health and Wellbeing Boards on the development of local online health information aimed at men
• Men should avoid buying prescription-only medicines from illicit sources, particularly internet sites, and this trade should be more tightly regulated.

“The NHS should use a range of communication tools, including all the digital technologies, when considering the information needs of men,” according to Peter Baker, Chief Executive of the Men’s Health Forum.

“We see no reason why men – and women – should not be able to book a GP appointment online, consult GPs online and even receive their prescription online all via secure links.

“We know men like the privacy and convenience of the internet. We want to see more men using good health websites, such as, and more websites addressing the specific needs of men,” he added.

Men’s Health Week has Government support. The Minister for Public Health, Anne Milton MP said: “Digital technologies offer a unique opportunity to communicate health information to men while supporting them to improve their health. I would like to congratulate the Men's Health Forum for choosing to highlight this issue during the 10th annual Men's Health Week.”

UK Digital Champion Martha Lane Fox said: “The internet is a vital tool for everyone who wants to find out more about their health and I welcome any initiative which calls for enhanced digital services within this area.”

Tottenham Hotspur Foundation, is working with the local community to spread the Men’s Health Week messages through projects including iMen50+, (in partnership with Age UK ‘Fit as a Fiddle’, funded by Big Lottery Fund), the new programme aiming to engage Men 50+ in the Internet. Grant Cornwell MBE, Chief Executive Officer at Tottenham Hotspur Foundation, said: “We are delighted to be hosting the launch of National Men’s Health Week 2011: Get Online.

“The Tottenham Hotspur Foundation work closely with the local community and we are committed to helping improve the lives of men in the area. We fully support the Men’s Health Forum’s vision for men to effectively use digital technologies to receive safe health information.”

The Men’s Health Forum and its partners have developed a number of online activities and products for the Week: a new campaign website; a new ‘mini manual’ guide for men on using digital technologies for health; a funny “Bloke Noises” health app; a humorous e-card; and throughout the Week an online surgery, Man MOT. Bupa will also be providing an online surgery on Facebook ( and Twitter (@BupaUK) during each weekday of the Week. The European Men’s Health Forum is also providing a pioneering web-based question-and-answer free service about any aspect of prostate health.


For media enquires please contact us.

Notes to Editors
• Pfizer’s Man MOT online health clinic (open Monday-Friday during Men’s Health Week at between 6-10pm)
• A free 3 day pass to one of 50 Nuffield Fitness & Wellbeing Centres for any man who registers at
• Health Clicks ‘mini manual’ (A man’s guide to getting the most out of going online
• A men’s health e-card from NHS Choices
• Bloke Noises free app
• The European Men’s Health Forum’s online prostate service –

For more information on Men’s Health Week:

Men’s Health Week 2011 Partners:

Connecting for Health
Department of Health
European Healthy Stadia Network
European Men's Health Forum (EMHF)
Federation of Stadium Communities
Greenwich Men's Health Forum
Harlequins Rugby
Institution of Occupational Safety and Health (IOSH)
NHS Choices
NHS Midlife Check
National Obesity Forum
Pennine Care NHS Trust
Prostate Action UK
Royal Mail
Royal Pharmaceutical Society
Royal Society for Public Health
Sport England
South Asian Health Foundation (SAHF)
Time-to-change/Get Moving
Tottenham Hotspur Foundation


Page created on June 10th, 2011

Page updated on June 10th, 2011


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