Low Value Medications

Over the last 2 years NHS England having been undertaking consultations on medicines that are commonly prescribed and either have little clinical evidence to support their use or might be available Over The Counter( OTC) at chemists without prescription. This has resulted in the publication of national guidance as linked here

https://www.england.nhs.uk/wp-content/uploads/2017/11/items-which-should-not-be-routinely-precscribed-in-pc-ccg-guidance.pdf

https://www.england.nhs.uk/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/otc-guidance-for-ccgs.pdf

Of particular relevance to opticians and optometrists is the advice that lutein and antioxidants ( eg vitamins A C E and zinc should not be prescribed for age related macular degeneration ( ARMD) as there is insufficient evidence to support this and that if patients want to use these or continue to use them then they should purchase them themselves. In addition both conjunctivitis and dry /sore eyes are considered suitable for patients to purchase OTC treatments themselves rather than ask for them to be prescribed by a doctor. This guidance also applies if you are entitled to free prescriptions. For full details see the source documents.

A leaflet is also available for patients – OTC Meds leaflet