If you are likely to be on a medication long term, we will prescribe this to you on a repeat prescription basis. When you receive the first prescription you will notice a form which lists which medicines you are able to re-order without needing to see the doctor again, and the number of times you can re-order this medicine.
All you have to do is place a tick next to the medicine you require and return the form to reception. Please allow 3 working days for the medicine to be ready for collection from the pharmacy; you will receive another order form with each new prescription for your use. You can request your repeat prescription in the following ways:
- Dropping form off at the box at reception (or if closed, through the letter box)
- Posting the form to us
- Online service - please contact reception for a registration form
Please note that NHS legal guidance states that telephone requests for prescriptions is not safe practice, as there is a significant risk of error of the wrong medication being issued without written confirmation of drug names.
Why does it take three days for repeat prescriptions to be issued?
Brora and Helmsdale practice receives approximately 200 repeat prescription requests on a Monday, and 100-150 requests on other days of the week. Some of our patients are on almost 30 medications.
Each of these has to be checked by a GP - it does not simply involve a signature on a form. The GP will want to check each request to ensure that the patient has had all the necessary monitoring that some medications require (many medications can affect blood pressure, blood clotting, kidney or liver function, so the GP will often want to look at the patient record to check that has been done) and also ensure that no medicines can have harmful interactions when taken together (which can happen when multiple medications are issued). This means looking up blood test results in paper files or on computer, checking doses, and consulting online computer systems to check for harmful interactions.
The prescriptions, once signed, are then sent to the pharmacist. They will again double check (as an additional safety step) to ensure that doses and potentially harmful interactions do not occur, and then have to dispense each medicine as prescribed. So, as you can see, it takes a lot of work. You can help us by putting your requests in at least 3 days before they are needed, to give us time to do the checks properly.
Patients on repeat medication will be asked to see a doctor, nurse practitioner or practice nurse at least once a year to review these regular medications and notification should appear on your repeat slip. Please ensure that you book an appropriate appointment to avoid unnecessary delays to further prescriptions.