Local engagement project:
Norfolk and Waveney’s NHS Clinical Commissioning Groups are asking GPs not to routinely prescribe ‘over the counter medicines’ for some common conditions, unless in exceptional clinical circumstances. Instead, people are being encouraged to buy them at a pharmacy or shop so that the NHS can spend the money it would otherwise cost on other areas of healthcare. If more people self-care for minor ailments, it could also free up important appointment time at GP practices.
Following a national consultation NHS England has reviewed the responses. A revised version of the guidance went to NHS England’s Board. They agreed to issue this guidance to CCGs immediately.
The guidance is part of the Medicines Value Programme which aims to ensure greater value from the NHS’ £17.4 billion medicines bill, through improving health outcomes, reducing waste, over-prescribing and over-treatment, and addressing excessive price inflation by drug companies.