§ Sandra Gidley
To ask the Secretary of State for Health what criteria were used to decide which medical conditions qualify for anti-impotence prescribing; and if he will make a statement. 
§ Ms Blears
In 1999 we decided to constrain the spend on drug treatments for impotence broadly within the range £12–£14 million a year, the approximate amount that was being spent on these treatments before the first oral treatment became available. The medical conditions conferring eligibility for NHS prescriptions from GPs were those believed to be commonly associated with impotence that we estimated could be met within the spending range (although, in fact, latest figures indicate that annual expenditure on drug treatments for impotence is £25 million). This does not mean that patients suffering from impotence arising from other causes have no access to drug treatment on the NHS. NHS treatment for such patients is available from specialist services where impotence is causing severe distress.
Following a review in 2001, we decided to continue the existing scheme.