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NZSMI congratulates global award winner

NZSMI congratulates global award winner

April 17, 2015: Consumer healthcare products industry body, the New Zealand Self-Medication Industry Association (SMI), congratulates one of its member companies, Douglas Pharmaceuticals, on winning “The Most Innovative Global OTC (over-the-counter) Marketing Campaign 2015 award sponsored byOTC.Newsflash” in Paris, France today.

The winning campaign was for Douglas’ erectile dysfunction (ED) treatment, Siilvasta (sildenafil). Douglas successfully sought to have sildenafil reclassified in New Zealand last October to allow trained pharmacists to supply the medicine without a prescription - the first ‘reclassification’ or ‘switch’ of its kind in the world.

“We applaud the Douglas initiative in applying for this medicine to be reclassified. It is a real achievement for a New Zealand company to win a Nicholas Hall OTC Marketing Award. These awards are highly regarded in the pharmaceutical world as Nicholas Hall is a world expert on OTC marketing,” SMI executive director, Tim Roper.

Mr Roper says the Douglas success could be followed by more such medicine ‘reclassifications’.

“Reclassifications or ‘switches’ such as this deliver more choice, easier access and potentially lower overall costs to consumers. Douglas’ success with Silvasta has shown that consumers want easier access to effective medicines,” explains Mr Roper.

He adds that an additional benefit of the reclassification is that more men are likely to get the health advice they need.

“Men tend to see their doctor less often than women and they may delay seeking treatment for ED longer than necessary. If they can walk into a pharmacy without an appointment in an informal setting they may be more likely to visit early and get the treatment they need or be appropriately referred to a doctor if the screening process reveals other conditions.”

He says that his industry would like to see other similar pharmaceuticals that are deemed safe and effective be reclassified as appropriate.

“Medsafe has even encouraged our members to submit more applications,” says Mr Roper.

ENDS

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