Over the counter medicines

Text size:

The challenge faced by all NHS organisations is how to spend the available budget in ways that most benefit the health of the whole population and deliver good value-for-money. We have a duty to ensure that every service we buy on your behalf is delivered to a high standard, is clinically effective and can be provided within our budget. As part of this, we have to regularly consider the medicines, treatments, products and food items that GPs in Sandwell and West Birmingham prescribe for patients to ensure that they are necessary, that they will improve your illness or condition and that they represent good value.

In line with NHS England requirements, Sandwell & West Birmingham CCG has issued a policy on prescribing of over the counter medicine and is supporting practices with implementing this policy. Please see a letter from the CCG supporting this here

From the 1 April 2019, you can no longer expect a prescription for a number of medications for certain conditions from your GP.

Examples of these medication include:

1. Paracetamol or ibuprofen gel for minor conditions associated with pain
2. Tablets for Hay fever e.g. Cetirizine, Loratadine
3. Creams for dry skin e.g. E45, Diprobase
4. Eye drops for dry eyes 
5. Gaviscon or Rennie for Indigestion
6. Vitamins

Please see the patient information leaflet on “Prescribing of over the counter medicines is changing” to get a complete list of conditions affected by this.

We advise you instead to seek advice from your community pharmacist on managing these conditions. 

For more information visit the NHS England website.

If you have any questions about this, please contact Time 2 Talk on 0121 612 4110 or email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.