Patient views sought on prescribed medicines and other items

Share your views about a national consultation on 3,200 prescribed products which could otherwise be purchased over the counter. 

While more people than ever before are calling on its services, our NHS is facing the biggest financial challenge it has known. Last year, 1.1billion prescription items were dispensed in the community at a cost of £9.2 billion to the NHS.

All clinical commissioning groups (ccgs) in England have been asked to respond to a national consultation on future guidance for doctors and nurses who prescribe medicines. Should the NHS be continuing to fund prescriptions for items freely available over the counter? Could we make better use of the expertise of pharmacists in recommending and supplying over the counter medicines to reduce the burden on primary care and try to ease access to appointments?

To inform our response to this national work, we are asking our local patients about their specific experiences and needs. We will combine this feedback with clinical expertise and local insight to respond to the national consultation.

To complete the survey please click here.

The survey will close 20 September 2017.

Dr Laura Hill, NHS Crawley CCG clinical lead for medicines management and local GP, working in partnership with NHS Horsham and Mid Sussex CCG, said: “Our health and care services need to change and adapt in response to developments in medicines and technology as well as continuously increasing demand.

“It has never been more important that the NHS gets the greatest value from the money it spends. We need your views about how we face this challenge.”

In part, the national consultation is reviewing items that are currently prescribed but:

  • could be purchased over the counter, sometimes at a lower cost that would be incurred by the NHS
  • treat a condition that is considered to be self-limiting (will get better on its own) and so does not need treatment
  • treat a condition that lends itself to self-care, i.e. that the person suffering would not need to seek medical care or treatment.

Some examples of these conditions include diarrhoea, cold sores, constipation, teething, insect bites and stings, conjunctivitis and sore throat.

Our local survey asks people how acceptable they think the proposed changes are and if there any groups of people that may be disadvantaged by the planned changes.

Dr Hill added: “We want local NHS services to meet the needs of our patients and our local community. To help us to do this, we work with patients and the public to ensure the services we commission are tailored to the needs of our population. We are always keen to hear and learn from your experiences and your ideas for how we can improve care.”

If you would like to contact us directly about this piece of work, or do the survey over the phone or in another format, please email or telephone 01293 600300 ext 4148.