PCTs urge GPs to limit prescriptions to 28 days

PCT drives to reduce medicines wastage are increasing costs for patients, causing some to decide not to have their prescriptions dispensed, a Leicester patient group has warned.

In May, as part of an initiative to cut drug waste, Leicester City PCT issued new prescribing guidelines to GPs, recommending they issue prescriptions for 28 days' supply wherever possible.

Patients who used to receive prescriptions for two or three months' supply of medicines are now only receiving 28-day prescriptions, Zuffar Haq, chairman of Leicester Patients Group, told Healthcare Republic. Patients are therefore having to pay the £7.10 prescription charge two or three times for the same amount of medicine.

Mr Haq said the group had heard from a number of patients who had not collected medicines because they could not afford the prescription charges. He pointed out that many patients found themselves in a gap where they faced increased prescription costs without being prescribed enough medicines to justify paying for a prepayment certificate.

Leicester City PCT said that, although it recommended 28-day prescribing, this was a guide and that doctors needed to be flexible. Other PCTs have similar guidelines on 28-day prescribing. Worcestershire PCT's guidelines, for instance, ‘strongly recommend' 28-day prescriptions for most patients.


Comment below and tell us what you think

Have you registered with us yet?

Register now to enjoy more articles and free email bulletins


Already registered?

Sign in

Just published

Clinical trials: Microscope in a lab

GPs could be incentivised to recruit patients onto commercial clinical trials

GPs could be offered incentives to recruit patients onto commercial clinical trials...

Talking General Practice logo

Podcast: How many GPs do we need for safe general practice, pay restoration, the state of premises

Talking General Practice looks at safe working limits and the number of GPs we need...

Stethoscope and a computer

EMIS to keep panic button after outcry from GPs

EMIS, one of the main GP IT system providers, has backtracked on plans to phase out...

Health minister Lord Markham

Health minister Lord Markham: How we will support GPs to offer patients greater choice

Health minister Lord Markham explains what the government's plans for using the NHS...

Patient receives the flu vaccine

Flu vaccination campaign to return to pre-pandemic cohorts this year

This year's flu vaccination campaign is set to be reduced after it was expanded during...

Plant-based diet

Vegan and vegetarian diets can play key role in reducing cardiovascular risk, study finds

Plant-based diets can play a significant role in lowering the risk of stroke and...