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Have your say on over the counter medicines on prescription

Should we limit over the counter medicine on prescription?

The NHS in South Nottinghamshire has today launched an engagement exercise to get people’s views about whether over the counter medicines should be on prescription for minor ailments.

People can comment on proposals to initially limit prescriptions for medicines for minor ailments from Monday 19 December 2016 to Friday 3 February 2017.

Minor ailments are those which can be treated with self-care and over the counter medicines, which are medicines you can buy in a supermarket, shop or pharmacy.

Why are we doing this?

The NHS is facing financial challenges which means we have to review the services we deliver. The Big Health Debate asks patients what they think and ensures the patient voice is heard as we plan services for the future.

As part of this, the South Nottinghamshire NHS, which covers Rushcliffe, Nottingham North and East and Nottingham West, need to prioritise how they spend their prescribing budgets.

Some facts and figures

  1. Last year, the NHS in the South Nottinghamshire area spent over £880,000 a year on prescriptions for paracetamol and ibuprofen. £880,000 could pay for (approx):
    • 112 hip replacements OR
    • 19733 GP appointments OR
    • 25371 hours of community nursing
  2. Nationally, seven million GP consultations every year are for minor ailments that could be self-treated at home. This takes, on average, one hour per day of GP’s time and costs the NHS £2 billion per year.
  3. Paracetamol can cost as little as 20p per packet in some supermarkets – paracetamol on prescription costs the NHS a minimum of FIVE times much as average supermarket costs.

Our proposals

We are proposing to limit prescriptions for over the counter medicines for minor ailments.

We’d like to know what impact this proposal might have for local patients, so we are running six weeks of engagement activity (Monday 19 December 2016 to Friday 3 February 2017) to seek your views.

Please fill in this survey and tell us what you think about this proposal and also about whether other over the counter medicines should be on prescription for minor illnesses.

How to share your opinion

  • Online
  •  Or call: 0800 028 3693 (option 2) and fill in the questionnaire over the phone
  • Email the Patient Experience Team for a questionnaire
  • Attend a focus group

Focus Groups:




Tuesday 10th January 2017 TBC Torkard Practice, Hucknall
Wednesday 11th January 2017 TBC Highcroft Practice, Arnold
Tuesday 17th January 2017 12:00 – 14:00 West Bridgford Library
TBC PM Bingham / West Bridgford (pending)
Thursday 02nd February 2017 13:00 – 15:00 Stapleford Library, Church Street, Stapleford, Nottingham, NG9 8GA
Friday 03rd February 2017 10:00 – 12:00 Eastwood Library, Wellington Place, Eastwood, Nottingham, NG16 3GB



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