Items which should not routinely be prescribed in primary care: an update and a consultation on further guidance for CCGs

Closed 28 Feb 2019

Opened 28 Nov 2018


Easy read version of the consultation document

In 2017, the cost of prescriptions dispensed in the community was £9.17 billion. This cost coupled with finite resources means it is important that the NHS achieves the greatest value from the money that it spends.  We know that across England there is significant variation in what is being prescribed and to whom. Often patients are receiving medicines and products which have been proven to be ineffective or in some cases dangerous, for which there are other more effective, safer and/or cheaper alternatives.

NHS England has partnered with NHS Clinical Commissioners to support Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs) in ensuring that they can use their prescribing resources effectively and deliver best patient outcomes from the medicines and products that their local population uses. CCGs asked for a nationally co-ordinated approach to the development of commissioning guidance in this area to ensure consistency and address unwarranted variation. The aim is that this will lead to a more equitable process for making decisions about guidance on medicines but CCGs will need to take individual decisions on implementation locally.

Set out in the consultation document are proposals for an review and update of Items which should not routinely be prescribed in primary care: Guidance for CCGs, published in Nov 2017. The commissioning guidance, upon which we are consulting, will be addressed to CCGs to support them to fulfil their duties around appropriate use of prescribing resources. This will need to be taken into account by CCGs in adopting or amending their own local guidance to their clinicians in primary care. The aim of this consultation is to provide you with information about the proposed national guidance and to seek your views about the proposals.

During the consultation period a range of events, including face to face events and webinars (online meetings) will be undertaken to gather feedback on the proposals – you can register for these here:

Face to face consultation meetings

Webinar (online meetings) 

  • 17 December 2018, 10:00am – 11:00am
  • 14 January 2019, 1:00pm – 2:00pm
  • 14 February 2019, 1:00 – 2:00pm: Booking can be made here.

Related documents

Please note that we cannot consider responses received after the 28 Feb 2019.


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