Poster and leaflet campaign set to tackle wasted medicines

March 26, 2012 by  

An NHS-backed poster and leaflet campaign is targeting residents of Basingstoke in a bid to reduce the cost of unused medicines to the health service.

Residents of Basingstoke and the wider Hampshire region are being targeted as part of a campaign to raise awareness about how unused or unwanted medicines affect the NHS. The NHS pays out around £9 million each year for unused or uncollected medicines, often as a result of a repeat prescription that is no longer needed.

The new campaign is being run by Strategic Health Authority for NHS South Central and it aims to reduce the amount the health service spends each year on medicine that goes to waste. Neil Hardy is the associate director of medicines management. He recently spoke about the campaign and the detrimental effect on the health service due to unused medicines, saying:

“A lot of the time wasted medication is from repeat prescriptions that are never used. That is real money to the local health service that we could use on something else… We want to encourage patients to stock-check before they order. If patients have a lot of unused medication at home, they should take it back to the pharmacy. People tend to hold on to it just in case, but it’s safer not to be in the home.”

The campaign used poster and flyer printing to tell Basingstoke residents about this and to encourage them to only order repeat prescriptions if absolutely necessary.