Last chance to have your say on over-the-counter medicines

Dr Kevin Hill, chairman of South Lincolnshire CCG.
Dr Kevin Hill, chairman of South Lincolnshire CCG.
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Have your say

Today is your last chance to have a say on possible changes to the way medicines are prescribed in pharmacies and surgeries across South Holland.

A medicines consultation on painkillers, antihistamines and other ”over-the-counter” medicines, launched by the four Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs) in Lincolnshire, is due to close this afternoon.

What we are trying to do is balance the books and not live beyond our means

Dr Kevin Hill, chairman of South Lincolnshire CCG,

Launched on October 4, the consultation is in response to the county’s CCGs considering proposals to change what they prescribe, including new restrictions on prescribing ominor ailment medicines used for short-term, self-limiting illnesses. Dr Kevin Hill, chairman of South Lincolnshire CCG, said: “Currently, the four Lincolnshire CCGs are spending £13.5 million per year on medicines available to buy over the counter.

“This includes medicines like paracetamol that can be bought very cheaply in a supermarket, but cost the NHS considerably more.

“In addition, as CCGs we spend around £472,000 a year on gluten-free products, £740,000 on baby milks and specialist infant formula and £2.9 million on prescribed nutritional supplements.

“What we are trying to do is balance the books and not live beyond our means, with there being a lot of things that people can do to help us in this.

“This includes not relying on an NHS prescription if they are able to buy their own over-the-counter type medicines.

“Our proposal also includes restricting the prescribing of gluten-free products, baby milk (including specialist infant formula) and nutritional supplements.

“However, we want to be clear that people who need to be prescribed medicines for conditions where the clinical need can only be met by prescription will continue to receive them as usual.”

Any changes are due to take effect on December 1 and to complete the survey, visit https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/LincolnshireCCGsMedicinesManagement