PSNC issues warning over government’s new HRT PPC
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The PSNC has warned the government’s decision to introduce a new prescription prepayment certificate giving women access to cheaper hormone replacement therapy for the menopause from April 1 could create difficulties for patients and increase pharmacies’ workload.
Pharmacy’s negotiator said the DHSC pressed ahead with plans for the certificate, which will provide patients with a year’s worth of HRT prescription items for £18.70, despite being advised in November last year to make all HRT medicines free-of-charge items which in turn would make the new system easier to implement and more cost-effective.
The PSNC said it “remains fully supportive of the Government’s decision to make HRT medicines more accessible to women at a reduced cost” but warned the new PPC for HRT medicines is “complex” and, in certain situations, would “not work well with existing prescription processing and pricing systems currently used in England.”
The PSNC, who reminded contractors that women who have a HRT PPC will carry on paying for other prescribed medicines outside of the certificate’s scope, also said it could create “additional workload and financial risks for community pharmacy teams.”
“It may also cause difficulties for patients unless the HRT prescription item is written on a separate prescription to other paid prescription items,” it said, insisting it was continuing to work with the DHSC to “understand what actions will be required by pharmacy contractors and to seek mitigations to the issues.”
The DHSC said patients can use the PPC "against an unlimited number of HRT items, such as patches, tablets and topical preparations." It added there will be no limit on how many times a valid certificate can be used.
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