Medicine waste management – time to fight back

Your repeat prescription service is at risk of being culled by your CCG. It's time to fight back to protect this much needed service.

Medicine waste is a big problem. It sets the NHS back by £300 million a year, much needed money that could be spent elsewhere in the health system. This wastage is either because people are not taking their medicines (intentionally or unintentionally) or because the system allows over-ordering of unnecessary prescription. Either way, everyone loses out – the NHS, the patient and pharmacy through the potential withdrawal of repeat prescription services.

Some cash-strapped, eagle-eyed CCGs are blaming pharmacy and have already withdrawn this service in an attempt to curb this waste and this is having dire consequences on pharmacy businesses. One pharmacist in Luton CCG reported that only four out of 26 local GP surgeries still accept repeat prescription orders and he has seen a 30% drop in footfall as a result.

 Local pharmaceutical committees are now fighting back to put the record straight and stop more CCGs withdrawing the service. They argue that pharmacy in fact helps discourage over-ordering because they can see medicines usage and can raise issues of over-ordering or non-compliance with the patient or the surgery.

Kent LPC has decided to go one step further and train all pharmacists and their support staff on medicine waste management and to then show evidence to the local CCGs of this training and how pharmacy is actively reducing waste and educating patients on the subject.

Don't risk losing this service. You can access the Medicine Waste Management module here. The training is free and available to all staff.


NOTE: To access the training you need to be LOGGED IN