NHS Prescription Changes

drug icon 2316244 1280Changes to the management of repeat prescriptions by community pharmacies

South Lincolnshire CCG and South West Lincolnshire CCG are making changes to repeat ordering of prescriptions by community pharmacies. Many patients manage their own repeat prescriptions by requesting items online, or by handing paper copies with of their prescription with the items they need to their GP.  However, there are some patients who have their prescription managed by a community pharmacy, and we are making changes that will affect these patients.

As of the 1 February community pharmacies will no longer be able to manage repeat prescriptions on behalf of patients, unless their GP practice has identified the patient as having a vulnerability or condition that requires the continuation of this service out of necessity. This means that many patients will now need to manage their own repeat prescription by requesting items directly from their GP practice one week in advance of needing them (the time taken to process a prescription).

The reason we are making this change is to reduce the amount of waste medicines handed in every year to GP practices, community pharmacies, or stored, sometimes excessively, at home. There are a number of reasons medicines waste occurs, including where items have been ordered and dispensed that were not required, because some medicines are only prescribed for occasional use or as needed.  This is why it is important patients order their own repeat prescriptions wherever possible.

By targeting medicines waste we are able to reduce stockpiling of medicines, and improve patient safety by reducing the need to store and monitor the life of medicines dispensed to patients. This will also help to reduce the cost of medicines returned to us, or which remains unused at home, meaning we can make best use of our resources.

For more information about the changes please find patient leaflets attached below. If you or anyone else affected by these changes needs support to order your prescription please contact the Patient Advice and Liaison Service on 0300 1239553 or contact your local GP practice.