December 19, 2006

Perhaps They Should Have Tested More - Glasgow's e-Formulary IT System

Because of a software bug, patients received Viagra instead of Zyban - and nobody complained! Go figure!

Computer glitch prescribes Viagra to stop smoking

By Tom Sanders  19 December 2006 11:19AM  General News

Smokers trying to quit report unusual side-effect.

A software bug in Glasgow's e-Formulary IT system has been blamed for replacing prescriptions for the Zyban anti-smoking medication with the erectile dysfunction medicine Viagra.

Doctors who tried to select the smoking pill instead ended up printing prescriptions for sildenafil, the generic name for Viagra. The National Heath Service Greater Glasgow has sent out a warning to the family doctors and surgeries in the area.

No patients have complained about receiving the wrong medications, a spokesperson for the heath authority told The Times.

The glitch has been traced back to an update of the General Practice Administration System for Scotland. The problem lasted about six weeks before it was noticed and will take an estimated four weeks before it is repaired.

The health risks of taking Viagra are limited, as the medication has no serious side-effects.