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RPSGB calls for NHS to provide better access to medicines

The Royal Pharmaceutical Society of Great Britain has called for improved access to effective medicines for NHS patients

The Royal Pharmaceutical Society of Great Britain (RPSGB) has called for improved access to effective medicines for NHS patients.

Welcoming the government's decision to allow patients to top-up their NHS treatment without losing their entitlement to further services, the RPSGB has said that greater emphasis should be put on improving the access to and affordability of medicines.

"The need for top-ups should be minimised as far as possible. Top-ups should be the exception, not the rule. The emphasis of this argument must be on improving access to medicines for NHS patients," said RPSGB President Steve Churton.

"Patients also need to be better informed about the medicines available to them, through access to unbiased information, so that they can make the best possible choices about their personal treatment. However, measures should be put in place to protect vulnerable patients from misleading claims. Pharmacists will play a key role in advising patients and helping them access trustworthy sources of information in these situations."

The Department of Health (DH) published Improving Access to Medicines for NHS Patients at the beginning of November 2008. The report by Professor Mike Richards, the national clinical director for cancer outlines the key recommendations for the top-up procedure.

10th November 2008

From: Healthcare

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