Controlled drugs rules 'harming patient care'

Current legislation to manage use of controlled drugs goes 'too far' and is actively harming patient care, delegates at the annual LMCs conference have recommended.

Proposing the motion, Dr Hal Maxwell of the Ayrshire and Arran LMC said controls needed to be beneficial to patients and prescribers.

'MI patients may be denied immediate relief of pain with opiates. It's detrimental to be left in pain. Terminally ill patients may also be denied treatment.'

He added: 'We need regulation that is sensible and helpful.'

Adding his support to the motion, Dr Peter Merron of Cornwall and Scilly Isles LMC, said the current regulations were 'dreamt up by grumpy old men in the middle of the night'.

But Dr John Grenville of Derbyshire LMC opposed the calls for an easing of regulations. ‘It's not that the rules are disproportionate, it's that GPs haven't learnt them,' he said.

‘We must help patients, but must make sure diamorphine doesn't get into the wrong hands.'

LMCs conference chair Dr Bill Beeby said there was evidence that various regulations are preventing doctors from carrying controlled drugs.

Click here for all the latest news from the LMCs Conference 2010

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