NHS Greater Glasgow & Clyde Area Drug and Therapeutics Committee
Greater Glasgow and Clyde Medicines
Medicines Update

High cost liquid medicines

A new initiative to reduce unnecessary cost associated with the use of liquid medicines in hospital has been launched.  A memo (available via StaffNet) from the Medicines Cost Effectiveness Group has been widely circulated highlighting the substantial additional cost of certain liquid preparations over their solid dose equivalents. Any requests for a liquid preparation on the target list requires to be screened and approved by a clinical pharmacist. The group advise that the first step is to review the overall need for the medicine and also the clinical implications of short-term discontinuation if the swallowing difficulty is temporary.  Where treatment is required, the memo advises on where it would be acceptable practice to open capsules and mix with food or crush tablets and disperse with water.

The memo also highlights the importance of review prior to discharge or transfer, with appropriate onward communication.

Similar practice may also be appropriate, with individual consideration, in a Primary Care setting.  Refer to the NHSGGC guidance on the use of specials in primary care and the specials A to Z list for further information.


Published 06/06/18