Changes to over the counter medications on prescription for minor illnesses
From Wednesday 1 March 2017, we will be limiting prescriptions of over the counter (OTC) medicines for minor ailments.
This decision was made after looking at feedback from clinicians and the findings of a six week patient engagement campaign undertaken by the South Nottinghamshire CCGs (Nottingham North and East, Nottingham West and Rushcliffe).
These plans mean that instead of receiving OTC products (such as paracetamol or ibuprofen) for short-term, self-limiting conditions (see leaflet below) on prescription, patients will be encouraged to self care and buy their own from their local pharmacy.
Rather than visiting their GP, most people can take care of themselves when they have a minor ailment through a combination of self care and OTC medicines, which can be bought in supermarkets and shops as well as in pharmacies.
Please note that:
- There are no plans to limit OTC medicines for people with long-term conditions
- GPs will be able to prescribe in circumstances of clinical need
- If symptoms persist, please book a GP appointment
There are lots of benefits to self care:
Expert advice to support you
Pharmacists can offer expert advice on a wide range of illnesses and you don’t need to make an appointment. Your consultation will be confidential and discreet.
Save yourself time
There’s no need to wait for a GP appointment - a lot of pharmacies are open late and at the weekend.
Save your GP time
Choosing to self care can free up more GP time so they can spend more time with patients with more
Save the NHS money
In 2015, practices across the South Nottinghamshire area (excluding Nottingham City), spent £1,966,265 on prescribing over the counter medicines. Many of these items are low cost and available from the pharmacist, and some are even available from your local shops and supermarkets. The money spent on those prescriptions, for minor illnesses, could be spent on treating more serious conditions.