The National Health Service (NHS) could save millions of pounds if pharmacists prescribed drugs to free up doctors’ time, a think-tank has suggested.
According to the Adam Smith Institute, a doctor’s role should be to diagnose and follow up patients, leaving pharmacists to decide what drug would be best for the patient.
A former Treasury official, Matthew Young, said: “No one is looking after the patient in terms of choosing the right medicine, adjusting it to the right dose and measuring whether it works. So patients get the wrong dose or end up throwing expensive medicines down the toilet.”
He said half of the £7bn annual NHS prescription budget is wasted because of “feeble management”. He added that high street dispensing would result in better management of drugs, reduce hospital admissions and reduce the wastage of medicines.