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NPA survey says public against online medicine sales

Two thirds of respondents to a National Pharmacy Association (NPA) survey are against online retailers providing NHS medicines in place of local pharmacies. Online medicine sales are on the rise, however their popularity some think is not. NPA survey 69% of over 1,000 “consumers” polled last month oppose “a shift away from local pharmacies supplying [...][...]

NHS England challenged by drug industry over medicine price limits

Trade body applies for judicial review of decision taken by NHS England and Nice, holding back funding for new drugs which is set to cost more than £20m a year in their first three years of use. NHS England :The UK drug industry is taking legal action over new limits on the price of medicines which [...][...]

NHS prescribed record number of antidepressants in 2016

Antidepressants : The NHS prescribed a record number of antidepressants last year, fuelling the upward trend that has seen the number of pills given to patients more than double over the last 10 years. However, this rise in figures raised many questions whether the rise is due to doctors handing out the drugs too freely, [...][...]

The Pharmaceutical industry is at risk from Brexit

Pharmaceutical news: Despite debates about the impacts of Brexit, the pharmaceutical industry is less eye-catching than other sectors. The pharmaceutical sector in the EU has increased from €125 billion to €225 billion over the last 15 years. Employment in the sector has risen from 535.000 to 725.000.  Pharmaceuticals are very advantageous for the EU. Exports [...][...]

UK ministers move to allay Brexit fears over access to medicines

The government has moved to dampen fears in the pharmaceutical and life sciences industry that Brexit will mean patients and the NHS will wait longer and pay more for drugs and treatment. The health secretary, Jeremy Hunt, and the business secretary, Greg Clark, have said they want to continue to “work closely” with the European [...][...]

How much does the NHS spend on medicines?

NHS spending medicines: Following the recent general election, the pressing topic of NHS spending is ever pressing. But putting a figure on its medicines spending is far from straightforward. NHS spending medicines – Nobody is able to answer the simple question of ‘how much the NHS across the UK spends on medicines?’. This reflects a [...][...]

Without action on antibiotics, medicine will return to the dark ages

Continued overprescribing and abuse could lead to more people dying of resistant infections than cancer. Only global cooperation can solve the problem. Four years ago Professor Sally Davies, England’s chief medical officer, published ‘The Drugs Don’t Work’, this gave the world a sombre warning of the growing threat posed by bacteria evolving resistance to life-saving [...][...]

NHS trusts overspend by £770m despite bailout funding

NHS Trusts are failing to limit overspending to £580m but make inroads into previous year’s £2.45bn figure. NHS trusts overspent by £770m last year in the latest sign that hospitals are finding it impossible to meet fast-rising demand for care while their finances are facing an unprecedented squeeze. That total is £190m more than the [...][...]

NHS drug rationing plans should be reversed

NHS drug rationing: More than 30 charities have written to the three UK party leaders urging them to commit to reversing NHS measures to increase rationing of medicines. Health officials last month brought in new thresholds which mean access to one in five treatments could be delayed or restricted. NHS drug rationing: Under the rules, [...][...]

NHS cyber attack is now under control

NHS Cyber attack: The NHS has been declared “open for business” after a crippling ransomware attack left large swathes of its services paralysed over the weekend. NHS England said that, as of 3pm on Monday, two hospitals remained on divert following the cyber attack that started on Friday, down from seven on Sunday. However, some [...][...]

Access to medicines: making market forces serve the poor

Access to medicines: Nearly 2 billion people have no access to basic medicines, causing a cascade of preventable misery and suffering. Since the landmark agreement on the Global Strategy and Plan of Action on Public Health, Innovation and Intellectual Property, WHO and its partners have launched a number of initiatives that are making market forces [...][...]

NHS faces ‘ticking time bomb’.

Obesity, smoking and binge drinking are pushing the health service to ‘breaking point. Doctors are warning Theresa May the NHS faces a “ticking time bomb” unless the Government drastically increases funding for public health. A report from the the British Medical Association (BMA) claims the health service is at “breaking point” due to a combination [...][...]

NHS hospital waiting lists to rise above five million

NHS Hospital Waiting Lists: The backlog of patients waiting more than 18 weeks for elective care procedures is expected to more than double by 2019 if nothing is done to improve current services, according to a document leaked to HSJ. Total hospital waiting lists are expected to rise by nearly 50 per cent from 3.7 [...][...]

Pharmacy Voice to cease operations end of April 2017

Pharmacy Voice to cease operations end of April 2017. The NPA gave notice in December 2016, to leave Pharmacy Voice at the end of 2017. This triggered a clause in Pharmacy Voice’s governing documents which prevents the organisation continuing without all three of its founding members. As a result, the Pharmacy Voice Board has since [...][...]

NHS patients could face delays accessing life saving drugs.

New rules mean health bosses in England can delay roll-out of expensive treatments after approval by NICE. NICE has imposed a £20m-a-year cap on the cost of new drugs, to be introduced in the NHS in a move to ease some of the financial pressure it’s under. The new measure will be introduced next month, [...][...]

Rationing of NHS services ‘leaving patients in pain and distress’

The King’s Fund Report says Rationing of NHS services ‘leaving patients in pain and distress’. The rationing of NHS services: The enforced rationing of overstretched NHS services is leaving patients in pain and distress, a new report has said. A combination of financial strain, staff shortages and unprecedented demand has led to shortfallings in care [...][...]

The risks behind buying medicines online

Warnings have been given regarding purchasing medications on the internet after an investigation found “widespread failings” with some online providers, according to the Care Quality Commission (CQC). The watchdog inspected 11 internet prescription services in England, finding some “potentially presenting a significant risk to patients”. Risks buying medicines online: The regulator said while some providers [...][...]

UTIs could soon be life-threatening without new antibiotics

The World Health Organization (WHO) has named which bacteria we most urgently need new antibiotics to fight, as they become increasingly resistant to the ones we’ve already got. Top of the list are gut bacteria such as Escherichia coli – a deadly threat in hospitals, but also the leading cause of urinary tract infections, which [...][...]

NPA chairman speaks out on Pharmacy Voice split

  The NPA (National Pharmacy Association) Chairman, Ian Strachan, has spoken out about the reasons behind the organisation’s split from Pharmacy Voice a few weeks ago. NPA split: He talked  exclusively to C+D three weeks before Pharmacy Voice’s announcement that it would disband as a result of the NPA’s decision , Ian Strachan stressed it is [...][...]

NHS hospital activity in England and how it’s changed

NHS hospital activity in England and how it’s changed NHS spending has been protected while other budgets such as welfare, local government and the police have been subject to significant cuts in recent years. Despite this, health services are facing unprecedented financial and operational pressures. In 2015/16, NHS providers ended the year with a record [...][...]