This Day On The Street
Continue to site
This account is pending registration confirmation. Please click on the link within the confirmation email previously sent you to complete registration.
Need a new registration confirmation email? Click here

Bashful? Buy The Little Blue Pill Online


TRENTON, N.J. (AP) â¿¿ Men who are bashful about needing help in the bedroom no longer have to go to the drugstore to buy that little blue pill.

In a first for the drug industry, Pfizer Inc. told The Associated Press that the drugmaker will begin selling its popular erectile dysfunction pill Viagra to patients on its website.

Men still will need a prescription to buy the blue, diamond-shaped pill on, but they no longer have to face a pharmacist to get it filled. And for those who are bothered by Viagra's steep $25-a-pill price, Pfizer is offering three free pills with the first order and 30 percent off the second one.

Pfizer's bold move upends the drug industry's distribution model. Drugmakers don't sell medicines directly to patients. Instead, they sell in bulk to wholesalers, who then distribute the drugs to pharmacies, hospitals and doctors' offices.

But the world's second-largest drugmaker is trying a new strategy to tackle a problem that plagues the industry. Illegal online pharmacies increasingly offer patients counterfeit versions of Viagra and other brand-name drugs for up to 95 percent off with no prescription needed. Patients don't realize the drugs are most often fake or that legitimate pharmacies require a prescription.

Other major drugmakers likely will watch Pfizer's move closely. If it works, drugmakers could begin selling other medicines that are rampantly counterfeited and sold online, particularly treatments for non-urgent conditions seen as embarrassing. Think diet drugs, medicines for baldness and birth control pills.

"If it works, everybody will hop on the train," says Les Funtleyder, a health care strategist at private equity firm Poliwogg who believes Pfizer's site will attract "fence-sitters" who are nervous about buying online.

But it won't be the end of drugstores, as pharmaceutical companies aren't allowed to fill orders for prescription drugs from individual patients. So Pfizer is having national drugstore chain CVS Caremark Corp. fill the orders placed on

1 of 4

Check Out Our Best Services for Investors

Action Alerts PLUS

Portfolio Manager Jim Cramer and Director of Research Jack Mohr reveal their investment tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.

Product Features:
  • $2.5+ million portfolio
  • Large-cap and dividend focus
  • Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
Quant Ratings

Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.

Product Features:
  • Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
  • Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
  • A custom stock screener
Stocks Under $10

David Peltier uncovers low dollar stocks with serious upside potential that are flying under Wall Street's radar.

Product Features:
  • Model portfolio
  • Stocks trading below $10
  • Intraday trade alerts
14-Days Free
Only $9.95
14-Days Free
Dividend Stock Advisor

David Peltier identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.

Product Features:
  • Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
  • Updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
Trifecta Stocks

Every recommendation goes through 3 layers of intense scrutiny—quantitative, fundamental and technical analysis—to maximize profit potential and minimize risk.

Product Features:
  • Model Portfolio
  • Intra Day Trade alerts
  • Access to Quant Ratings
Real Money

More than 30 investing pros with skin in the game give you actionable insight and investment ideas.

Product Features:
  • Access to Jim Cramer's daily blog
  • Intraday commentary and news
  • Real-time trading forums
Only $49.95
14-Days Free
14-Days Free


Chart of I:DJI
DOW 17,719.92 -78.57 -0.44%
S&P 500 2,080.41 -9.70 -0.46%
NASDAQ 5,108.6660 -18.8590 -0.37%

Free Reports

Top Rated Stocks Top Rated Funds Top Rated ETFs