aims to cut £200,000 medicines overspend
Highbridge Medical Centre has changed the way that patients
order prescriptions in an effort to reduce a huge overspend on unused
The centre in Highbridge's Pepperall Road has an annual overspend
of up to £200,000, caused in part by drugs wastage and over-ordering
The centre has therefore just introduced the re-introduction of
an old patient-initiated prescription requests system to try and
halt the wastage.
Speaking to Burnham-On-Sea.com, Harvey Sampson, Clinical Lead at
Highbridge Medical Centre, said: "We currently have a quite
significant overspend on our prescribing budget and one of the main
contributors to this is drug wastage and inadvertent over-ordering
by patients, resulting in drug waste."
"To try and combat this we have changed the way patients can
order their prescriptions."
"Up until the start of May we have had a system whereby the
pharmacies order on behalf of their patients and, although extremely
convenient for patients, this has led to multiple instances of drugs
being ordered unnecessarily."
He added: "We have recently found a hoard of drugs at one
patients house which had accumulated over many months and
is thousands of pounds of our drug budget wasted."
"We have had numerous meetings internally and with the pharmacies,
and have agreed to revert to patient-initiated prescription requests
"This was the system at Highbridge up until a few years ago,
and is still the preferred system for the majority of practices
"I do think this will have benefits, both in cutting down
on drug wastage and also encouraging patient engagement and understanding
of their own health conditions, and in particular understanding
a little more regarding the medicines that they take."
He added that the problem is not unique to Highbridge Medical Centre,
saying that other centres across the region are also dealing with
Pictured: Top, Highbridge Medical Centre where the prescription
changes have been introduced and, above prescription pills (Allan