Pharmacies are being told to 'make their premises and services more attractive to men' by the Department of Health.
This is one of the specific recommendations in the Department's latest report Choosing Health through Pharmacy which also urges that 'Pharmacy services should be promoted and developed as a source of advice, information and support for self care for men'.
The report points out, just as the MHF has over the past few years, that 'men under-use pharmacies (and other health services) relative to other groups, even though pharmacies are potentially the kind of service men are more likely to use because they are anonymous and easily accessible'.
The report draws on recent MHF work such as the Men and Chlamydia project and the excellent Pop Down Your Local campaign run last year by Developing Patient Partnerships (with the Royal Pharmaceutical Society of Great Britain, the Consumer Health Information Centre, the National Pharmaceutical Association and the MHF). It suggests that pharmacies could be put to greater use for testing cholesterol levels, blood pressure and for disease such as chlamydia.
The report concludes: 'Men are more likely to access pharmacy services if they are perceived to be more men friendly. This could include advertisements aimed at men in magazines read by them, national newspapers, etc. Male-friendly services could be advertised in the pharmacy window.'
MHF Director Peter Baker said: 'This is an excellent development which, if implemented in full, will certainly improve men's health. It's a major policy breakthrough for men in particular and the principle of targeted health care in general which we hope will pave the way a similar gender sensitive approach in all health policies. We look forward to working with the pharmacy sector to help get these important recommendations put in place on the high street.
Page created on April 4th, 2005
Page updated on December 1st, 2009