Wednesday, 11 February 2009

Prescription Charges - We're quite Lucky Really!

My my that was a Christmas party and a half!

Welcome back to the OGM's Rambles.............................................................

So Tony (BIGNEWS Margate) had a ramble about NHS Prescribing guidelines as reported in the Screws of The World Newspaper.

I can understand where Tony's coming from and on the surface, the whole thing looks pretty damn unfair.

Before I start to ramble about this topic, have a read of something I spoke about last year regarding prescription charges here

Ok, now you've read that, lets go on to the topic of prescribing guidelines. It's been going on for years!!!!!! That's the short answer. The long answer is that if a patient is not exempt of prescription charges the GP will quite often prescribe 2 months (in exceptional cases even 3!) however, guidelines for prescribing 28 days is aimed primarily at those patients who take many different medications (in most cases, the elderly)

There is a good reason for prescribing in 28 for this catagory of patients. It's often the case that their medications can change quite frequently. If the GP were to prescribe say 3 months worth and then after one month, the medication needs to be changed then that consitutes quite a waste of medication which results in more cost to the NHS and of course that means you and me!

Don't get me wrong. I'm not defending the NHS here but I can personally say that on many an occasion, I have witnessed complete wastes of medicines costing hundreds of pounds and it's often due to over prescribing.

On saying that, I'm no lover of the Tax we pay via the prescription charge.

But here's the thing............... What if we had to pay for prescriptions? i.e. the cost of the medicine itself. The vast majority of medications prescribed actually cost a darn site more than £7.10 as a matter of fact, I had to get 2 prescriptions for Mrs Daktari today. I had to pay £14.20 but if I'd had to pay for the actual drugs, I'd be looking at about £50 to £60!!!!

It's not ideal, but until someone has the balls to get this lark sorted as to why Wales don't pay at all etc. I'd rather carry on the way things are at the moment.