Prescription Direction Materials
NHS England is concerned that, in a small number of cases, general practices or pharmacies are seeking to influence inappropriately which pharmacy dispenses a patient’s medicines, or which pharmacy a patient nominates to receive their prescriptions electronically. They have been working in collaboration with the British Medical Association General Practitioners Committee, General Medical Council, Pharmaceutical Services Negotiating Committee (PSNC), General Pharmaceutical Council, Pharmacy Voice and NHS Protect to look at ways to ensure patients’ rights are not undermined.
In order to ensure patients are fully informed of their choice they are asking all general practices and pharmacies to display the poster prominently, as close as practicable to the location where patients receive prescriptions.
Distance-selling and internet pharmacies should display this information prominently on their websites and take reasonable steps to bring this notice to the attention of all patients, for example by including a copy of this notice with dispensed medicines that are delivered to patients.
Pharmacy contractors can obtain additional copies of the poster from the PSNC by contacting firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you are aware of a situation where the right of patients to choose where their prescriptions are dispensed is being influenced, we would encourage you to contact us in the first instance.
If a patient/customer has already complained directly to a pharmacy about their prescription direction material, and they are not satisfied with the pharmacy’s response to that complaint, they should contact the Parliamentary & Health Service Ombudsman (PHSO). The PHSO makes final decisions on all complaints about NHS services. NHS England cannot investigate complaints that have already been made directly to the pharmacy.
To take a complaint to the Parliamentary & Health Service Ombudsman, visit www.ombudsman.org.uk or call 0345 015 4033.