There’s nothing funny about Man-Flu

The Rugby Blog is pleased to be supporting a new initiative designed to help stubborn men seek medical advice. 

To encourage men to think more about their health and seek medical advice, a viral campaign produced by Pfizer called the ‘Ministry of Manly Behaviour’ has been launched to raise awareness of Man MOT (Monday Opportunity to Talk,, the UK’s first online health surgery exclusively for men, who lack the confidence or time to visit their GP.


It is thought that the term ‘Man-flu’ could be having a negative impact on men’s health. Research commissioned by Pfizer has revealed that over 40% of men (43%) agree that the term is denying them the right to be ill and over half (52%) agree it is preventing them from seeking advice for a legitimate illness.

Peter Baker from the Men’s Health Forum said, “Unfortunately it’s become acceptable for men to be labelled with ‘Man-flu’ when they’re feeling unwell. However, the reality is not that men complain too much but that too many continue to suffer in silence and avoid their GP, which in some cases can lead to potentially serious medical conditions going undetected. Instead of deterring men from accessing health systems, we should be encouraging men to talk more about any health concerns they may have and motivating them to seek medical support.” 

He continued, “Since its launch in July 2010, Man MOT has proven to be an innovative and highly successful approach to tackling male health issues. This free and anonymous service offers men the opportunity to access confidential health advice online, with the ultimate goal of driving them back into the healthcare system when necessary.”

Man MOT has been specifically designed for men who are not comfortable visiting their GP, offering medical advice on a broad range of health issues in total confidence, from qualified GPs. 

Dr Berkeley Phillips, Medical Director at Pfizer said: “Man MOT has been hugely successful in encouraging men to not only think more about their health but to actively engage with a healthcare professional in an environment they feel comfortable with – anonymous and online. As we expected, the confidential nature of the service has proven particularly popular with men looking to address what they consider to be embarrassing or sexual health problems. Pfizer and our partners are committed to finding innovative new ways to support men’s healthcare alongside existing health services. We’re therefore delighted that both NHS Choices and NHS Direct will support Man MOT as we extend the service for another six months.”

Online surgeries will continue to run from 6 – 10pm every Monday evening until May 16th 2011.  For more information, please visit

Please note that as the GPs are not aware of each user’s full medical history they cannot give individualised medical advice, but can refer them to their own GP if issues of concern arise.

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