Medicines Waste Campaign

South Manchester CCG have launched a wasted medicines campaign to address the issues which are constantly highlighted to us in Medicines Management.

We are tackling the waste from all angles – Patients, Pharmacies and Practices.

Patients - we are launching a campaign with the help of and their patient information materials which  has been delivered to all South Manchester practices this week. –this will help to encourage patients to become more aware  of waste from a safety and a cost point of view.

A press release has been sent to all local papers , the MEN has already picked this up. Please see a copy of the press release attached.

Pharmacies - A  letter has been posted to all Community Pharmacies who regularly dispense South Manchester patient prescriptions .

We are asking all pharmacies to ensure that all patients/carers are contacted prior to dispensing and that they clearly stamp and sign and date to indicate this has been done -  to ensure only the items required are requested. If this has not been possible – this must be highlighted on the request so the practice can chase up with the patient.

Practices .

Practices can encourage this message by querying requests which haven’t been stamped & signed to say the patients has been contacted.

If a prescription hasn’t been stamped & signed, then the practice will return the request back to the Pharmacy to check what the patient needs before issuing the prescription.

Many thanks for your cooperation.

Medicines Management


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South Manchester Clinical Commissioning Group

Press Release


NHS South Manchester Clinical Commissioning Group (SMCCG)

 launch major initiative to reduce medicine waste


A campaign aimed at reducing unnecessary waste launches on 22nd January 2014, across South Manchester.


Local health chiefs have estimated that an incredible £1 million is lost each year in South Manchester through medicines waste alone.


The campaign, launched by NHS South Manchester Clinical Commissioning Group calls upon patients to:


·       Only order what they need

·       Return their unwanted medicines to their pharmacy for safe disposal

·       Take their medicines with them when they go into hospital

The £1 million that could potentially be saved in South Manchester through reducing wasted medicines could be spent on:


·      39 more nurses OR

·       1,000 more drug treatment courses for Alzheimer’s OR

·       66 more drug treatment courses for breast cancer OR

·       270 more hip replacements OR

·       1,041 more cataract operations

Dr Bill Tamkin – Chair of South Manchester Clinical Commissioning Group - “We want patients on repeat prescriptions to think about what they order and only ask for what they need and are running out of.


This will mean more money can be spent on treating illnesses such as cancer and heart disease instead of being wasted on unused and unwanted medicines.


If you do not order an item one month, it does not mean that it can not be ordered at a later date. Any of the medicines can be dispensed when needed at a later date, but once medicines have been dispensed, they cannot be reused and are then destroyed.


Everyone involved in prescribing, dispensing or reviewing medicines have a responsibility to make sure that patients/carers are involved in making decisions about their treatment and that more medicines are taken as recommended.”


In addition, SMCCG have asked local community pharmacies in South Manchester to contact all patients/carers before they dispense a repeat prescription in order to check which items are needed each month.

Hopefully this will reduce medicines being dispensed which are not needed at that time”.


Posters and leaflets will be displayed in GP practices to raise awareness of medicine waste among both patients and carers. Further information may also be found on the national website  


If you have any queries about your medicines, please contact your surgery or local pharmacy to discuss.






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