Pfizer Viagra Online: Drug Manufacturer Begins Selling Erectile Dysfunction Pill Via Its Website

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Pfizer's Viagra In an unprecedented move for the pharmaceutical drug industry, Pfizer will begin selling its popular erectile dysfunction pill Viagra directly to patients on its website.

In an unprecedented move for the pharmaceutical drug industry, Pfizer Inc. (NYSE:PFE) will begin selling its popular erectile dysfunction pill Viagra directly to patients on its website.

While men will still need a prescription to buy the popular blue pill on Viagra.com, they will no longer need to visit a pharmacist to get it filled. Pfizer is offering three free pills with the first online purchase and 30 percent off the second one as a part of its promotion.

The world’s second largest drugmaker is moving its Viagra operation online in response to competitor online pharmacies that distribute counterfeit versions of Viagra and other brand-name drugs for up to 95 percent off with no prescription needed, according to the Associated Press.

The move is a major disruption to the drug industry's current distribution model, which sees drugmakers sell their products in bulk to wholesalers, who then distribute the drugs to pharmacies, hospitals and doctors' offices.

As investors and other industry drugmakers watch closely to see how Pfizer’s bold move will turn out, its potential success could provoke other industry pushers to do the same with different medicines that are already wildly counterfeited and sold online, i.e., diet drugs, medicines for baldness and birth control pills.

But while the boom of online consumer shopping has coincided with an influx of online prescription drug sales, few shoppers realize that the vast majority of online pharmacies are illegitimate sites.

A January study by the National Association of Boards of Pharmacy, which accredits online pharmacies, found that only 257 of 10,275 online pharmacy sites it examined appeared legitimate.

Pfizer, which invented the term "erectile dysfunction," has long been aggressive in fighting counterfeiters, conducts undercover investigations and works with authorities around the globe, according to the Associated Press.

Viagra, which accounted for $2 billion of Pfizer’s worldwide revenue last year, is the companies most counterfeited drug in the U.S.

A 2011 study, as cited by AP, in which Pfizer bought "Viagra" from 22 popular Internet pharmacies and tested the pills, found 77 percent were counterfeit. Most had half or less of the promised level of the active ingredient.

Many of the illegitimate sites claim to sell “generic” versions of Viagra, even when there is no such thing. Pfizer has patents giving it the exclusive right to sell Viagra until 2020 in the U.S. and for many years in other countries.

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