Lyrica – Pregabalin update


The following message has been sent to all prescribers by Sunderland CCG:

NHS England have produced new guidance (attached) on the prescribing of pregabalin. This highlights the end of the period of patent protection for the Lyrica brand of pregabalin across all clinical indications from 17th July 2017. From this date, pregabalin can be prescribed generically for any indication as clinically appropriate.

Note – if pregabalin is being used for epilepsy, consider prescribing by brand in line with MHRA guidance, given the potential for different bioavailability between brands.

KEY POINTS

  • Pregabalin currently costs £1.15 per CAPSULE.
  • Once the patent expires, generic versions will be more widely available and the price is expected to fall by October but it may be sooner.
  • The cost reduction will only be applied to prescriptions written generically as “pregabalin”.
  • Any prescriptions written as “Lyrica” will continue to be charged at full price.
  • The new price is not yet known however, to give an idea of the savings, if we assume the price halves, then for the remainder of the year we would expect savings of over £1.5m across Sunderland practices
  • Please change any repeat prescriptions for “Lyrica” to “pregabalin” (except when used for epilepsy, please follow guidance above.)

If you would like any further information then please contact us on sunccg.mo@nhs.net