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Medicine amnesty set cut £800,000 waste statistics

By Burton Mail  |  Posted: March 28, 2014

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PEOPLE in East Staffordshire are being asked to check their medicine cupboards as part of a campaign to show how everybody – not just pharmacies, GPs and care home staff – can help save the local NHS £800,000.

East Staffordshire’s Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) will be out and about across the area throughout April to talk to people about ways to work together so that NHS money isn’t wasted on unused or unwanted medicines.

Waste medicine amnesty events will take place in the following locations:

lTrent Medical Practice, in Branston, on Wednesday, April 2;

lBurton’s Queen’s Hospital on Thursday, April 10;

lAsda Pharmacy, in Burton, on Tuesday, April 15; and

l Dean & Smedley St Peter’s Pharmacy, in Stapenhill, on Thursday, April 17.

Charles Pidsley, a Burton GP and chairman of the CCG, said: “We’re asking people to spring clean their medicine chests and check their repeat prescriptions.

“Often people have been prescribed medicines that for a number of reasons they are no longer using. It’s tempting, and all too easy, to tick the repeat prescription boxes and order medicine – just in case. But that means we are paying for medicines that aren’t doing anyone any good.

“In fact it’s wasting £800,000 in East Staffordshire that could be used to fund other services in our community.”

Anyone bringing unwanted medicines to one of the ‘medicines amnesty’ events will have the opportunity to dispose of unwanted/out of date medicines as well as talk to pharmacists about what medicines they really need.

Dr Pidsley added: “All out-of-date or unused medicines should be disposed of correctly, so please bring these medicines to one of the events – or to your local pharmacy.

“Waste medicine is a problem we need to tackle together. Our campaign is already working with GPs and pharmacists and we know the public will want to play their part too.

“Together we really can make a difference. Often that means people’s prescription bags include medicines they are no longer using or use less frequently. Most people won’t even be aware that ordering medicines they don’t need is a cost to the NHS.”

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