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Self-care

Have you received medication on prescription for a minor condition that you would be happy to buy yourself from a local pharmacy or supermarket?

The costs to the NHS for many of the items used to treat minor conditions are often higher than the cost of buying them over the counter, as they contain hidden costs.

For example, a pack of 12 anti-sickness tablets can be purchased for £2.18 from a pharmacy, whereas the cost to the NHS is over £3.00 after including dispensing fees. The actual total cost for the NHS is over £35 when you include GP consultation and other administration costs. *

You can help us to reduce the NHS medicine bill by not asking for over the counter medicines on prescription for minor conditions.

How can you help?

A wide range of information is available to the public on the subjects of health promotion and the management of minor self-treatable illnesses.

Many community pharmacies are also open extended hours including weekends and are ideally place to offer advice on the management of minor conditions.

If you have a self-limiting illness i.e. a condition which does not need treatment as it will heal or be cured of its own accord, or have a condition which can be managed by self-care (i.e. by buying medicines that are available in local pharmacies or supermarkets) then please help us by not asking for medicines on prescription.

This advice is not intended to discourage patients from getting a prescription when it is appropriate to do so, e.g. if you have a chronic condition that requires the long-term use of these medications.

If you are unsure whether or not this applies to you, please speak to your GP or Pharmacist.

Speak Up! It’s our money. Our service.


* Source: Drug Tariff online.