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NHS Consultation on proposals to no longer routinely prescribe 18 medicines

26 September 2017

Items which should not be routinely prescribed in primary care: A Consultation on guidance for CCGs

View consultation

The consultation closed 21 October 2017.

The consultation document lists 18 medicines which according to government plans should not be routinely prescribed in primary care. The purpose of the consultation was to seek views on the rationale for proposed changes and recommendations to be included in forthcoming guidance.  

The consultation indicates that the 18 items fall into the following three groups:

  1. Items of low clinical effectiveness, where there is a lack of robust evidence of clinical effectiveness or there are significant safety concerns. 

  2. Items which are clinically effective but where more cost-effective products are available, this includes products that have been subject to excessive price inflation. 

  3. Items which are clinically effective but due to the nature of the product, are deemed a low priority for NHS funding. 


DR UK response

For a health consultation, this has led to unprecedented levels of concerns from members and networks.

We very much hope that an individual or personalised approach will be taken without frightening people way beyond their capacities.

Under shared decision-making, any items no longer routinely prescribed should still be available at affordable rates and in safe and accessible ways (to include easy read and general support to improve crucial two-way communications on symptoms, etc.).

Items under consideration

  • Co-proxamol
  • Dosulepin     
  • Prolonged-release Doxazosin (also known as Doxazosin Modified Release)
  • Immediate Release Fentanyl       
  • Glucosamine and Chondroitin      
  • Herbal Treatments  
  • Homeopathy
  • Lidocaine Plasters  
  • Liothyronine 
  • Lutein and Antioxidants
  • Omega-3 Fatty Acid Compounds
  • Oxycodone and Naloxone Combination Product          
  • Paracetamol and Tramadol Combination Product        
  • Perindopril Arginine
  • Rubefacients (excluding topical NSAIDs)           
  • Once Daily Tadalafil
  • Travel Vaccines
  • Trimipramine
  • Gluten Free Foods  
  • Items that are prescribed in primary care and are available over the counter