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Self-Care Information

Self-Care Information
 "People have a responsibility to protect their own health, choosing appropriate treatments and managing long- term conditions.
 In many cases people can take care of their minor ailments, reducing the number of GP consultations and allowing GPs to
 focus on caring for more poorly patients, such as those with co-morbidities (more than one illness), the very young and elderly, 
 managing long-term conditions and providing new services. 
 A large range of common illnesses and injuries can be treated at home simply with over-the-counter medicines and plenty of
      Be prepared for common ailments by keeping a well-stocked medicine cabinet at home.
      Take a look at the self-care advice videos available at Lancashire and South Cumbria Integrated Care Board :: Self care (icb.nhs.uk)
      for tips on looking after yourself
      Further information about self-care can be found here
      A useful interactive resource is available here for GP's Pharmacists and other Healthcare professionals

Prescribing of Over-the-Counter Medicines
GPs in East Lancashire and Blackburn with Darwen CCG's will no longer normally prescribe medicines which can be bought over-
the-counter for short term conditions and minor ailments.

What are short-term conditions and minor ailments? 
Short-term conditions tend to improve on their own without a long-term effect on a  person’s health. Minor ailments are
uncomplicated conditions which can be diagnosed and managed without seeing the doctor. 
Some examples of these include: coughs, colds and sore throats; colic; threadworms; verrucas; warts; acne and indigestion. 
What are over-the-counter medicines? 
Over-the-counter (OTC) medicines can be bought directly without a prescription from a high street pharmacy, supermarket or
other shops and online. Some examples include: paracetamol and ibuprofen;  antihistamines; eye drops to treat allergies and  
indigestion treatments. 
Why will over-the-counter medicines no longer be routinely prescribed? 
We recently reviewed our policy to prescribe OTC medicines following a consultation with the public during July 2017, on
stopping the routine prescribing of these medicines. The majority of people who responded to ourconsultation supported this
proposal. The NHS spends valuable financial resources and doctors’ time on prescribing medicines and other products
that you can buy without a prescription. The money we can save could help to fund more procedures e.g.hip and knee 
replacements, more drug treatments for breast cancer and more community nurses. 
As our local population continues to grow, this prescribing places more pressure on scarce NHS resources. Medicines can be
bought from shops or pharmacies after seeking appropriate advice from a healthcare professional. Significant savings can be  
made by not taking up a GP appointment for the supply of an OTC medicine and should also increase the availability of
appointments for patients with more serious  conditions. In order to fund services of the greatest need in Lancashire,
we need to make sure that public money is being used in the most cost effective way. Reducing the prescribing of OTC 
medicines is also now part of the NHS England agenda. Many CCGs around the country are restricting or stopping the
prescribing of OTC medicines on the NHS. It is not just the cost of the medicines which could be a saving but also NHS costs
or the entire process (including GP time for an appointment).