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Last Updated: Thursday, 29 April, 2004, 00:26 GMT 01:26 UK
Men 'ask mum for health advice'
Many men prefer to talk to family members
One in four British men go to their mum if they are worried about their health, a survey suggests.

Almost half say they would turn to their wife or partner if they need medical advice.

The findings come at the start of a campaign to encourage more men to visit their pharmacist for advice.

The ICM poll for Developing Patient Partnerships found just 3% of the 470 men questioned went to their pharmacist for advice.

One in 10 said a lack of confidentiality stops them from seeking advice from their local pharmacist.

One in seven wrongly thought that pharmacists weren't qualified to give them medical advice.

Almost a quarter said their "other half" usually goes to the pharmacy for them if they need anything.

Family advice

Many of the men said they preferred to turn to family members if they were worried about their health.

Over half of those between the ages of 18 and 24 said they would ask their mum.

No appointment is needed to visit a pharmacy
Dr Gill Hawksworth,
Royal Pharmaceutical Society

Some 44% of those between 25 and 34 did likewise. The figure for those between 35 and 44 was 30%.

Over a quarter of those questioned said they would prefer to go shopping rather than seek medical advice. One in seven said they would prefer to visit their mother-in-law.

Dr Ian Banks, a trustee of the DPP and president of the Men's Health Forum, urged men to use their local pharmacy.

"The time has come for men to start taking advantage of this excellent source of confidential medical advice available on almost every high street," he said.

"Pharmacies aren't just there to sort out hangovers and headaches," he said.

"A quick trip to your 'local' could really save you several days of feeling ill and help you deal with your symptoms

Dr Gill Hawksworth, president of the Royal Pharmaceutical Society, said men could visit their pharmacist when they want.

"No appointment is needed to visit a pharmacy where expert advice and support is always available."

Mike Owen, from the Consumer Health Information Centre, added: "Most men need to take more interest in their own health - they can't just leave health matters to their partner or mother.

"They need to realise that they can access medication themselves easily for many common ailments and seek supportive advice and guidance from their local pharmacy."

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