Prescriptions

Repeat Prescription Requests

If you require a prescription for long term or established treatment, the request can be made in a number of ways:

We do not accept telephone requests (to avoid any possible prescribing errors).

We require a minimum of 3 working days to process a prescription request and ask that you plan ahead at busy times of the year such as Bank Holidays.

If you have any questions, please complete our Prescription Question form for details.

If you would like to save time and order all the medication you have on repeat at the same time rather than irregular times throughout the month please use our online Prescription Synchronisation form.

Medication

Two Rivers Medical Centre is live with Electronic Prescription Service which means all medication prescriptions will be issued on an electronic prescription and will be sent electronically to your nominated pharmacy.

If you haven’t nominated a pharmacy, please use our Register for the Electronic Prescription Service form, update this on your online record or call reception.

Medication Reviews

Patients on repeat medication will be asked to see a doctor, nurse practitioner or practice nurse at least once a year to review these regular medications, you will be notified when this is due.

Please ensure that you book an appropriate appointment to avoid unnecessary delays to further prescriptions.

Private Prescriptions

If a patient chooses to pay for private healthcare because their treatment is not available on the NHS or because they do not wish to be treated on the NHS, they are responsible for paying all costs, including tests and the private consultant is responsible for managing every aspect of their healthcare (unless the patient chooses to transfer back to the NHS at a later date to continue treatment).

Prescriptions Charges and Exemptions

Extensive exemption and remission arrangements protect those likely to have difficulty in paying charges (NHS prescription and dental charges, optical and hospital travel costs).

The NHS prescription charge is a flat-rate amount which successive Governments have thought it reasonable to charge for those who can afford to pay for their medicines. Prescription prepayment certificates (PPCs) offer real savings for people who need extensive medication.

You can find out if you are entitled to free prescriptions by visiting www.nhs.uk/get-help-with-prescription-costs.

View the cost of prescriptions by visiting www.nhs.uk/how-much-nhs-prescription-charge.

For telephone advice and order line call 0845 8500 030.

To buy a PPC online visit NHSBSA: Prescription Prepayment Certificate.

Emergency Prescription Policy

We require a minimum of 3 working days to process requests for repeat medication. This allows the doctor sufficient time to make the checks necessary to ensure your medication is prescribed safely. Wherever possible, this is done by a doctor who is known to you.

Making special arrangements to provide emergency prescriptions on the day requested interrupts a doctor’s scheduled work, which has a detrimental effect on the service we can provide for other patients, and is potentially unsafe.

The duty doctor is required to assess acutely unwell patients in the surgery and at home if needed, attend to urgent contact from medical professionals in the surgery and hospital, and at times attend to the dying or deceased.

For these reasons, we will issue emergency prescriptions only when it is clinically necessary to do so. In these cases, we will issue sufficient medication for 7 days only.

Clinically Necessary Medication

The GP Partners have reviewed the medicines we prescribe and have produced a list of items for which we will, if necessary, issue an emergency prescription. These are considered by Two Rivers Medical Centre and most other practices to be emergency medications.

The following are emergency medications, without which you could suffer significant harm:

  • Selective beta-2-agonisits, antimuscarinic bronchodilators and compound bronchodilators for management of acute asthma and COPD exacerbation e.g. Salbutamol / Ventolin reliever spray, Terbutaline/Bricanyl
  • Nitrates for management of acute angina e.g. Glycerol Trinitrate spray or tablets
  • Anti-arrhythmic drug for maintenance of arrhythmias only e.g. Verapamil/Diltiazem/Amiodarone/Bisoprolol, Propranolol/Atenolol
  • Insulin
  • Adrenaline/epinephrine for acute anaphylaxis e.g. EpiPen
  • Corticosteroids for replacement therapy or long-term management of inflammatory disorders e.g. Oral steroids (Prednisolone/Dexamethasone) if used as a daily, long term medication
  • Palliative care patient medication i.e. medications required to relieve symptoms in terminal illness
  • Drugs used for treatment of schizophrenia and bipolar disorder e.g. Lithium/antipsychotics – Olanzapine, Risperidone
  • Disease modifying agents for active progressive arthritis e.g. hydroxychloroquine
  • Anticoagulants e.g. Warfarin/NOAC – Rivaroxaban/Apixaban
  • Dopaminergic and antimuscarinic drugs used in parkinsonism, essential tremor, chorea, tics and related disorder
  • Drugs used for treatment of schizophrenia and bipolar disorder
  • Anti-epileptic drugs e.g. Phenytoin/Sodium Valproate/Levetiracetam
  • Hypnotics used for treatment of fitting e.g. midazolam
  • Specialised baby milks
  • Glucagon for treatment of hypoglycaemia

If the medicines you need are not on this list, you should make a routine request and allow a minimum of three working days before collecting your prescription. You will not suffer any significant harm if you are without the medication for this period of time.

Emergency Supply from a Pharmacy

The pharmacist can make an emergency supply for medications that have been previously prescribed to you. However, this is a private service and is not funded by the NHS so some pharmacies may charge you.

Holiday Medication

We do not provide emergency prescriptions for holiday medication.

Holidays are often booked weeks or months in advance. When preparing for a holiday you should consider holiday insurance, sun protection, transport and your routine medication. Please ensure you allow a minimum of two working days for your request to be processed.

Please note we can supply a maximum of three months’ medication. If you are travelling for a longer period, you will need to make arrangements to obtain medication locally.

Hospital Prescriptions

If you have been seen at the hospital, you may have been given a 2 week hospital prescription. You should not leave the hospital without seeing the hospital pharmacist, as the hospital prescription is not valid in community pharmacies.

If the hospital pharmacy is closed, you should make arrangements for the medication to be collected the next day. If a hospital doctor has written to the practice asking your GP to prescribe medication, we require a minimum of 5 working days to process this request.

Please Respect our Staff

We have instructed our reception and administrative staff to follow this policy and they are not authorised to make any exception.

They are not allowed to interrupt the duty doctor. We will not tolerate any abuse of our staff as they follow these instructions given by the Partners.

Over the Counter Medicines

Ipswich and East Suffolk CCG do not support the prescribing of medication that is available to buy from local pharmacies or supermarkets for children or adults.

The medications listed below are examples of medicines that should be purchased by the patient/parent/guardian. (This list is not exhaustive).

  • Moisturising creams, gels, ointments and balms for dry skin with no diagnosis
  • Hay fever remedies e.g. antihistamines, nasal sprays (patients 18 years or over)
  • Bath oils and shower gel (unless recommended by a specialist for infected atopic eczema)
  • Vitamins and supplements e.g. low dose vitamin D (less than 2,000units), I-Caps, multivitamins
  • Potassium hydroxide for Molluscum contagiosum e.g. Molludab
  • Lubricating eye drops and chloramphenicol eye drops and eye ointment (patients 2 years or over)
  • Anti-diarrhoeal medication for short term diarrhoea (less than 72hrs)
  • Paracetamol and ibuprofen for short term use
  • Antifungal preparations e.g. Canesten
  • Rehydration sachets
  • Anti-inflammatory gels e.g. ibuprofen gel
  • Laxatives for short term use (less than 72 hours)
  • Head lice treatments
  • Threadworm tablets
  • Lactose free infant formula
  • Antiperspirants
  • Cough and cold remedies
  • Medicated shampoos e.g. Alphosyl, Capasal
  • Mouthwash e.g. Corsodyl
  • Indigestion remedies e.g. Gaviscon, Peptac
  • Haemorrhoidal preparations e.g. Anusol
  • Nasal douches e.g Sterimar

The reasons for this are as follows:

  • Patients have a responsibility to look after themselves and their children where possible and manage self-limiting minor ailments with support from their local pharmacy if needed
  • Patients should keep a small supply of simple treatments in their own medicine cabinet so they are able to manage minor ailments at home
  • All these medicines are widely available from supermarkets and pharmacies at a reasonable cost
  • Many of these treatments are more expensive when prescribed on the NHS compared to when they are purchased in pharmacies or supermarkets e.g. paracetamol is approximately 4 times as expensive on prescription
  • The NHS belongs to everybody and the CCG must ensure that its resources are used in the best possible way for all patients

Any patient queries or complaints should be directed to PALS by telephoning 0800 389 6819 or emailing PALS@Suffolk.nhs.uk.