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GM pays $17M for erectile dysfunction care [04/18/2006]
DETROIT (UPI) -- A GM spokeswoman says paying for Viagra and other erectile dysfunction drugs contributed $17 million last year to the company's losses.

The Detroit News reports that the ailing auto giant frequently uses Viagra and Cialis as an example of the problems it has bringing costs down. GM spends a total of $5.6 billion on healthcare.

The company has raised the co-pays for erectile dysfunction drugs to $18. But the company pays for healthcare for twice as many retirees as current workers, so those costs are likely to remain high.

"It's clear that it would be good for the company to have a somewhat more restricted palette of prescription drugs that we pay for, but those are discussions negotiated with the union," CEO Rick Wagoner told the News. "There's certain things that people like to pick on, and it's easy to see why."

Ford and Chrysler refused to say how much ED drugs contribute to their health costs.

Copyright 2006 by United Press International

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