Scrip rules relax for pandemic

Pharmacists can now provide patients with a month's supply of prescription-only medicine without a prescription.

This permanent change to emergency medicine supply rules extends the previous five-day limit to 30 days. It is part of a set of legislative changes designed to ensure continuity of supply in a pandemic.

During a pandemic, the requirement to interview patients directly before supplying a prescription-only medicine will also be removed.

Details of the changes to medicines supply have been outlined in a joint statement issued by five pharmacy bodies, including the Royal Pharmaceutical Society of Great Britain and the National Pharmacy Association.

The statement also explained that, in England, all antiviral drugs distributed from health protection units will be exempt from prescription charges. Supplies against NHS FP10 prescriptions will, however, be subject to normal charges.

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