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Last year in the UK 1.1 billion items were dispensed on prescription costing a total of £9.2 billion
Many of the items which are included within these prescription are available ‘over the counter’ meaning that you can purchase these items yourself in pharmacies and other outlets, without the need for a prescription. Normally the price of these over the counter drugs is much much lower than what you would have to pay for a prescription fee. If more patients are able to self medicate simple ailments, patients and the NHS can both save a drastic amount of money.
Here is a list of some of the most common drugs that you can buy much cheaper in supermarkets, pharmacies, or even in discount stores:
A number of ailments also have a variety of over the counter treatments which are much cheaper to purchase yourself than via prescription. In order to save an estimated £560 million, the NHS will no longer prescribe medications for the following minor conditions for which over the counter medication is readily available at low cost:
People want to be more involved in decisions about their health and care. SDM ensures that people are supported to be as involved in the decision making process as they would
SDM means people are supported to:
It is, therefore, a process in which clinicians and individuals work together to select tests, treatments, management or support packages, based on evidence and the
individual’s informed preferences.
SDM is relevant in any non-life threatening situation when a health or care decision needs to be made and a range of options (including doing nothing) is available.
SDM ensures that individuals are supported to make decisions based on their personal preferences and are, therefore, more likely to adhere to evidence based treatment regimes,
more likely to have improved outcomes and less likely to regret the decisions that are made.
By paying attention to individuals’ informed preferences we can support people to achieve outcomes that matter to them. Aggregating the decisions of informed individuals to a population level means we can commission and provide services that informed people want and therefore allocate resources more efficiently.
Patient Decision Aids (PDAs) help people decide on healthcare options. They provide evidence-based information on the options available, along with likely outcomes, benefits, harms and uncertainties. Patients can access a range of PDAs from the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence to inform conversations between a themselves and their healthcare professional, supporting them to make informed choices in line with their personal values and preferences.