Campaign aims to stop medicines waste

Tue 05th April 2016


Over half a million pounds is wasted in Sunderland on medications each year and NHS Sunderland Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) is calling on patients to take some simple steps to help save NHS funds.

Often patients receive medicines that they don’t use, or only use occasionally.  Many people leave the pharmacy with their medicine and then return some of it unopened: this then cannot be used for anybody else and must be destroyed.

Dr Jackie Gillespie, prescribing lead for Sunderland CCG, said: “By reducing the amount of medicines being wasted each year, we could increase the available funding for other desperately needed health services.

“Many items are returned unopened but they cannot be used. However, if you check at the counter before you leave the pharmacy and hand back any unwanted items, then they will not go to waste.

“If you order repeat prescriptions then please only order what you need and if you have any worries about your medication, discuss it with your GP or your pharmacist.

“Take your medicines if you can, tell us if you can’t.”

Unused prescription medicines cost the NHS in the UK an estimated £300million every year. This could pay for almost 12,000 more community nurses, over 80,000 hip replacements or almost 20,000 more drug treatment courses for breast cancer.

The campaign will run until the end of April. For more information click here.

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