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NHS launches latest report on prescribing costs

NHS Business Services Authority (NHSBSA) has released a report on Prescribing Costs in Hospitals and the Community for England, in:- 2022-23.

The total cost to NHS commissioners in England, for the issue of medicines, appliances, and medical devices in 2022/23 is estimated to be £18.5 billion.

This includes a deduction of £674 million for central rebates. The total cost without central rebates was £19.2 billion, an increase of 7.99% from £17.8 billion in 2021/22.

In 2022/23, the cost to NHS commissioners in England for medicines prescribed in primary care and dispensed in the community was £9.59 billion (50% of total expenditure).

Medicines prescribed and dispensed in the community, by Hospitals, cost £93.6 million; and by dentists cost £32.4 million. Medicines prescribed and dispensed in adult prisons and detention centres cost £24.9 million.

The cost of medicines issued in Hospitals was £9.45 billion (49.2% of total expenditure).

In 2022/23, drugs within the BNF (drugs category):- 'Malignant Disease and Immunosuppression' had the highest spend; £3.26 billion for items dispensed in the community. This was the Net Ingredient Cost (NIC), i.e. before any discounts. Of this spend, £3.09 billion was for medicines issued and dispensed in Hospitals.

The average costs per capita when using NIC for items dispensed in the community for medicines, appliances, and medical devices prescribed in England in 2022/23 across all settings was £349. This is an increase from £324 in 2021/22.

To read the full report go to:- NHABSA.NHS.UK.

"Make sure your home is free from clutter" says North West Ambulance Service

THIS winter, North West Ambulance Service (NWAS) is urging people in Cheshire and Merseyside to make sure their houses are free from clutter to prevent trips or slips, particularly those who are more susceptible to falling.

Last year, NWAS responded to over 100,000 emergency calls relating to falls either over the phone or in person. The number of emergency calls NWAS receives for falls is always high, but this figure increases during winter. The service responded to 60% more falls-related calls across the North West from December 2021 to February 2022 compared with autumn of that year. In Cheshire and Merseyside alone, NWAS received 35,968 falls related calls in 2022; handling 94% more calls in January compared to September.

Most of us will have experienced a fall at some point. Having a fall will be nothing more than a bit embarrassing for many, however, a fall can be startling, upsetting and life changing, especially as we get older.

78% of falls related calls to NWAS in 2022 were for patients aged:- 65 and older, with this age group more likely to require Hospital treatment than younger patients.

There are several reasons why people fall which can all intertwine. This can be down to personal risk factors such as:- weak muscles, sensory issues, poor balance and walking difficulties. It can also be down to chronic medical conditions, medication side effects, delirium and fall hazards around the home.

Community Specialist Paramedic Sara Harris says:- "At home, we tend to move around without thinking about our safety as it is where we are comfortable and where we spend much of our time. Falls prevention in and around the home may seem like common sense, however, it isn't always easy to recognise the things that can cause trips, slips and falls. In my role, I have seen clutter, poor lighting, uneven surfaces and slippery floors as being some of the main causes of falls that could have been avoided. Making a few small changes at home will make it easier to get around and carry out daily activities. An important 1st step toward preventing falls at home is to remove anything that could cause trips or slips while walking around."

To do this:-

  • Clear clutter from floors or stairs; including:- small furniture, pet bowls, trailing cables, or other things that can cause you to trip.

  • Avoid leaving or storing items on stairs and hallways.

  • Arrange furniture to give plenty of room to walk freely.

  • Remove loose mats and rugs to reduce the risk of tripping accidentally.

  • Improve lighting.

  • Store frequently used items within easier reach.

  • Change or adapt furniture and furnishings to give more support.

These changes may also make it easier to get around your home and carry out daily activities.

It can be helpful to have someone else, such as:- a friend, relative or neighbour you trust, to have a look with you to see if there is anything that could be made safer.

For more information visit:- NHAS.NHS.UK/Falls.

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