Commenting on a joint letter1 issued by the British Medical Association (BMA), Dispensing Doctors Association (DDA) and the Pharmaceutical Services Negotiating Committee (PSNC) highlighting the challenges and risks faced both by those dispensing prescriptions and patients accessing prescriptions during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, co-signatory and BMA GP committee chair Dr Richard Vautrey said:
“While many parts of the health service have gone to extraordinary lengths to adapt the delivery of care to ensure the utmost safety, it is very concerning that those dispensing prescriptions and patients accessing them are still being placed at considerable risk.
“It is absolutely crucial therefore that the Government grants greater flexibilities to improve safeguarding and limit contact for dispensers and patients by removing the need for prescription signatures and prescription charges.
“Just as NHS staff working on the frontline expect to be adequately protected during the Covid-19 pandemic, it is only right too that dispensers should be afforded the same protection as the patient-facing nature of their role places them at considerable risk.
“Simply put, this is about protecting and saving lives. I suggest to the Government that it is in everyone’s best interests to adopt this approach as a matter of urgency.”
Notes to editors
The BMA is a trade union representing and negotiating on behalf of all doctors in the UK. A leading voice advocating for outstanding health care and a healthy population. An association providing members with excellent individual services and support throughout their lives.
- Letter issued by the BMA, DDA and PSNC to Matt Hancock.
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