Online pharmacies have experienced a significant surge in demand for Tamiflu, the leading anti-flu drug.
Dozens of websites abroad sell the drug, made by Roche, without question or on the basis of a simple online symptom questionnaire which a doctor examines. The Government has enough anti-viral drugs, including Tamiflu, to treat half the population.
However, many people are sufficiently worried by the outbreak of swine flu to seek their own supplies online.
Robert Mackay, of London-based theonlineclinic.co.uk, which sells Tamiflu in packs of 10 for £159.95, said: “It’s gone absolutely mental. Order numbers are up something like 1,000 per cent. Normally, we’d only be selling a couple of courses a week but we’ve had several hundred in the last 24 hours.”
Tom O’Brien, the managing director of Direct Response Marketing Online Pharmacy, based in Jersey, said: “We hadn’t sold any for the past six or seven months but have done 40 large orders overnight and today.”