The Department of Health has announced that the Government has decided not to progress with plans for the generic substitution of medicines in primary care. Following a full public consultation the Government has published its response which outlines the reasons why proposals which would have allowed dispensers to replace branded drugs for generic versions when dispensing a prescription will now not be implemented in England.
The response to the consultation on proposals to implement generic substitution in primary care is available on line at:
Earl Howe, Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Quality, commented:
“We know that there are valuable savings to be made from the use of generic medicines where it is clinically appropriate. However, we believe that national plans to enforce generic substitution in primary care are too prescriptive.
“We have listened to the concerns from the public, patients and other interested parties about legislative proposals to enable pharmacists to replace a branded medicine with a generic medicine. It is also not clear whether the proposals would have provided substantial benefit to the NHS, compared to the efforts of frontline staff to implement them. This is why we have decided not to progress with national implementation.
“We want patients to get the drugs their doctors recommend at the best price for the taxpayer. Patients should be reassured that we are looking at more appropriate ways of supporting the use of generic medicines and, in the long term, value-based pricing will help to ensure we pay a price for drugs which better reflects their value.”