First counter sale of sex infection drug in the UKAugust 6th, 2008 - 12:49 pm ICT by IANS
London, Aug 6 (IANS) Health authorities have for the first time approved across-the-counter sale of medicine and test kits for the detection and cure of a common sexually transmitted disease chlamydia without seeing a doctor. Doctors, however, have said it is a folly as chlamydia patients generally also suffer from other infections which are not detected by the kits.
The £45 service will allow patients who test positive for the sex infection to get the antibiotic azithromycin for themselves and any partners at pharmacies, without seeing a doctor.
It is for people aged 16 and over who suspect they have chlamydia, an infection that often has no symptoms but can damage fertility if left untreated. They will pay £25 at pharmacies for a kit that involves sending a urine sample by post for testing, with results sent to their home address.
Anyone who is positive will be able to spend £20 on the drug Clamelle, a single tablet made from an existing generic medicine which is cheaper on prescription, the Daily Mail said.
But leading GP, Dr Trevor Stammers, claimed it was a partial solution to an epidemic of sex infections. He said: “People who test positive for chlamydia should be tested for other sexually transmitted infections, they’ll think they’re safe and they won’t be. Letting people bypass the doctor is a short-sighted approach that may make the problem worse and could also increase antibiotic resistance.”
Chlamydia is the most common STI, accounting for 121,000 cases last year with two-thirds among 16-24-year-olds.
Tags: accounting, antibiotic resistance, azithromycin, chlamydia, daily mail, doctors, epidemic, fertility, folly, generic medicine, gp, health authorities, home address, other sexually transmitted infections, partial solution, pharmacies, test kits, two thirds, uk london, urine sample