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Over the counter medicines

Over the counter medicines

Together with Clinical commissioning groups (CCGs) across Humber, Coast and Vale we have been promoting a campaign to encourage people to seek over-the-counter remedies from a local pharmacist or supermarket for a range of minor health conditions.

GPs in the Vale of York will no longer usually prescribe medicines that patients can buy over-the-counter for the following short-term minor health concerns:

1. Probiotics
2. Vitamins and minerals
3. Acute Sore Throat
4. Infrequent Cold Sores of the lip.
5. Conjunctivitis
6. Coughs and colds and nasal congestion
7. Cradle Cap (Seborrhoeic dermatitis – infants)
8. Haemorrhoids
9. Infant Colic
10. Mild Cystitis
11. Mild Irritant Dermatitis
12. Dandruff
13. Diarrhoea (Adults)
14. Dry Eyes/Sore (tired) Eyes
15. Earwax
16. Excessive sweating (Hyperhidrosis)
17. Head Lice
18. Indigestion and Heartburn
19. Infrequent Constipation
20. Infrequent Migraine
21. Insect bites and stings
22. Mild Acne
23. Mild Dry Skin
24. Sunburn
25. Sun Protection
26. Mild to Moderate Hay fever/Seasonal Rhinitis
27. Minor burns and scalds
28. Minor conditions associated with pain, discomfort and/fever. (e.g. aches and sprains, headache, period pain, back pain)
29. Mouth ulcers
30. Nappy Rash
31. Oral Thrush
32. Prevention of dental caries
33. Ringworm/Athletes foot
34. Teething/Mild toothache
35. Threadworms
36. Travel Sickness
37. Warts and Verrucae

Remember you don’t need an appointment to see a pharmacist, which makes it quicker and easier to get advice and medicines rather than visiting your GP.  Buying medicines over the counter will also help to free up GP appointments for those who really need them.

Currently the NHS spends around £136 million a year on prescriptions for medicines which could otherwise have been bought over-the-counter. Buying medicines yourself will help save the NHS money as some products to treat minor, short-term illnesses can be purchased over-the-counter at a lower cost than that which would be incurred by the NHS.

Importantly, the prescription changes will not affect the prescribing of over-the-counter treatments for long-term conditions or more complex conditions, or where minor illnesses are a symptom or side effect of a more serious condition.



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