Prescribing Advice for GPs

An NHS Prescribing Advisers' Blog

SMC Update - December 2019

The Scottish Medicines Consortium (SMC) has issued its monthly advice on newly licensed medicines.

Prasterone (Intrarosa®) has been rejected for use in the treatment of vulvar and vaginal atrophy in postmenopausal women having moderate to severe symptoms. The manufacturer did not make a submission to the SMC and as such it cannot be recommend.

Action: Clinicians should be aware of the recommendations of the SMC. Routine use of rejected and restricted medicines should be avoided.

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CKS Updates - November 2019

During November 2019 Clinical Knowledge Summaries were published or updated in the following areas.

All of the topics have been reviewed and undergone minor restructuring. The Depression in children topic has been updated in line with current NICE guidance. The Styes (hordeola) topic and the Teething topic have seen more significant layout changes and a new Assessment section has been added to the Styes (hordeola) topic.

Action: Clinicians who see patients with any of these conditions may find the new and updated information useful when reviewing current clinical practice.

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Antiviral Medicines Authorised for Influenza Season 2019/20

The Department of Health has written to healthcare professionals via the Central Alerting System (PDF) to advise that antiviral medicines may now be prescribed at NHS expense due to rising levels in reporting of influenza-like illness.

Surveillance data indicates an increase in influenza cases in the community and as such GPs and other prescribers working in primary care may now prescribe antiviral medicines for the prophylaxis and treatment of influenza. NICE has issued guidance on the treatment and prevention of influenza with antiviral medication. A treatment algorithm and dose schedules are contained in Public Health England guidance.

Clinicians should remember to endorse the prescription with 'SLS' to ensure that it can be dispensed in community pharmacies without undue delay.

Action: Clinicians should be aware of this letter and familiarise themselves with the current prescribing guidance.

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