Medicine has advanced considerably in the past few years with many new drug being recommended to treat many old diseases. The practice has a policy to prescribe
- effective medication.
- in a cost effective manner.
- to prescribe safely.
We do this in the following ways.
Firstly we use a "formulary" of drugs that has been developed by doctors and pharmacists in NHS Harrow following these principles. This formulary has been agreed with our hospital colleagues but on occasions they may request drugs that are not on the formulary.
Each recommendation will be judged on an individual basis but we cannot guarantee to prescribe in these circumstances. We will advise them of this and the reasons for not prescribing.
Secondly the practice prescribes “generically”. That is we always use the chemical name of the medication not the manufacturers trade name. (The difference is between “corn flakes” the generic name and “Kellogg's Corn Flakes ™” the trade name.) One effect of this is that you may find that the appearance of the box the tablets come in will vary from time to time. You should try and remember the chemical name.
Finally some drugs are highly specialised and are normally only prescribed by the hospital. Increasingly hospitals wish to get GP's to take on this responsibility. In these circumstances we will only prescribe if there are protocols established between the hospital and ourselves to allow this to be done safely.