Morecambe Bay CCG is to follow new guidance from NHS England, which aims to free up almost £100 million nationally for front line care each year, by significantly reducing prescriptions for ‘over the counter’ medicines such as those for indigestion and hayfever.
The new guidance was issued by NHS England following the results of a public consultation on the prescribing of over-the-counter medicines for minor, short-term health concerns.
By decreasing routine prescribing for minor, short-term conditions, many of which will cure themselves or cause no long-term effect on health, vital funds will be freed up for frontline care.
The guidance does not affect prescribing of over the counter items for longer term or more complex conditions or where minor illnesses are as a result or side effect of something more serious.
The NHS in Morecambe Bay each year spends: £111,000 on acute pain and headaches; £42,000 on hayfever and £10,000 on diarrhoea.
Other over-the-counter products currently prescribed include remedies for dandruff, indigestion and mouth ulcers.