Dr David Crichton’s blog: Have your say on over the counter medicines

Have your say on over the counter medicines: short survey

 

Please complete this short survey to help us gather your feedback and experiences as patients in Doncaster.

Last month, an important campaign launched across South Yorkshire and Bassetlaw in response to a national consultation that took place last year seeking people’s views on reducing the number of NHS prescriptions for medicines that could be sold over the counter.

Last year, the NHS spent approximately £569 million on prescriptions for minor conditions, these could have been bought over the counter from a pharmacy, petrol station or supermarket, freeing up vital resources that could be used on other services which benefit everyone.

If you get a prescription for medicine that can be bought cheaply and easily over the counter at your local pharmacy or supermarket, you may find that your doctor or health care professional will no longer provide it – most people don’t visit their GP for minor conditions.

As an example, paracetamol costs around 1p per tablet over the counter, but the NHS has to pay at least £3.40 if you get it on prescription. Vitamin D costs the NHS five times more than it costs you to buy it over the counter, so there are clear benefits for us all if we can make better use of our local NHS resources.

Doncaster is working with other South Yorkshire and Bassetlaw CCGs and we have already sought to reduce the level of prescribing of over the counter medicines. We are working together to implement the recommendations from the national consultation and communicate and engage with as many local people as possible across the region.

This important message will help local people to make the right decisions about their care, and help clinicians to make the right decisions when prescribing medicines for their patients.

Please complete this short survey to help us gather your feedback and experiences as patients in Doncaster.  I want to encourage as many people as possible to complete the survey and share your views, so please feel free to circulate details of the survey to your family and friends. The survey runs until  23 November 2018.

If you would like to know more about the results of the national consultation, further details are available here.