NHS in Bristol, North Somerset and South Gloucestershire warns against panic-buying of medicines during coronavirus outbreak

  • 20 March 2020

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Health leaders at Bristol, North Somerset and South Gloucestershire Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) are urging members of the public not to stockpile medication during the coronavirus outbreak to ensure that everyone can get the medication they need.

Many pharmacies in the area have reported running low on essential medications and being inundated by orders for prescriptions as the country manages the outbreak of the virus, also known as Covid-19.

Bristol, North Somerset and South Gloucestershire CCG Medical Director, Dr Martin Jones, says that over-ordering prescriptions is unnecessary and could put people at risk. He said:

Huge pressure is being put on primary care and community pharmacists with extra ordering of medicines. We want to reassure people in our area that there is no need for you to do anything new or different with your medicines. People should order their prescriptions and take their medicines as normal.

Stockpiling or purchasing medication that isn’t needed could disadvantage other patients, and there is also a risk of shortages if stockpiling disrupts the normal supply chain.

Pharmacist, Ade Williams who is based in Bedminster, Bristol, said:

We appreciate this is a very worrying time, but our pharmacy processes are well prepared for additional strain – what we do need, however, is for people to cooperate with the advice not to stockpile.

If you take medicines for a long-term medical condition, please order your repeat medication within 7 – 10 days of your current medication running out. Community pharmacies are part of the NHS frontline, working tirelessly to provide ongoing healthcare and medicines. We will be there for you and your loved ones. Our processes are tested to withstand surges in demand – but do please support us and your community by following the usual procedures.

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