From Monday 6th February 2023

Pharmacies offer a valuable service for patients that includes requesting medication directly from practices, however, there are times when this is not the best way to ensure patient safety and can lead to avoidable wastage. To help with this we have agreed locally between our PCN, Bow Health Network, and local pharmacies that we will standardise our approach across practices and pharmacies to make it easier for everyone to know what to do.

What can my pharmacy request for me?

These three categories cover the majority of the medication we prescribe for patients.

What can’t my pharmacy request for me?

The following items need to be requested directly by yourself

  • Any acute/ past medication 
  • Any medication never prescribed by the practice previously
  • Any variable use medication such as Creams and Ointments​ with the exception of Diabetes related medication such as insulin 
  • Painkillers – opiates including tramadol, co-codamol, codeine, dihydrocodeine, PRN morphine/oxycodone
  • Hypnotics – including benzodiazepines and melatonin
  • Salbutamol inhalers – it is important for your safety we keep track of your reliever inhaler use​. Your preventer inhaler can be requested by the pharmacy.
  • Rescue Packs – antibiotics and prednisolone for COPD exacerbations – this is to help us keep track of usage to ensure your safety.​
  • Laxatives 

What will happen if my pharmacy requests medication for me that they shouldn’t in error? 

Initially, to help with the transition, we will message the pharmacy and the patient to inform them that the request needs to be sent by the patient. The patient will then need to request the medication.

As time goes on, and we refine any issues,  the pharmacy will tell you this before requesting these types of items. This will be helped as the pharmacies will be able to directly see the same information about your medication as the practice can.