A letter detailing Brexit advice for Scottish pharmaceutical and medical device companies has been released by Chief Medical Officer, Dr Catherine Calderwood, and Chief Pharmaceutical Officer, Dr Rose Marie Parr. The letter details the collaboration between the Scottish government and various UK administrations to ensure that people receive the medical supplies that they need.
Upon the subject of medicinal stockpiling, the letter explains that:
- The NHS and pharmaceutical companies have been encouraged to stockpile an additional 6 week supply (above their usual contingency stocks), and more if possible
- Arrangements are being made to import products that cannot be stockpiled
- Medicines for which there are inadequate supplies have been compiled into a list with specific contingency plans for each, such as finding alternative products or suppliers
- GPs and the general public are discouraged from stockpiling
Upon the subject of medicinal shortages, the letter details that:
- New organisations have been established in order to identify and manage medicinal shortages, and to provide recommendations to the NHS. In the UK the relevant body is the Medicines Shortage Response Group (MSRG), whereas in Scotland the relevant body is the MSRG (SCO)
- Shortages should be reported using current reporting systems
- Low-impact shortages will be resolved by pharmacists electronically amending prescriptions to provide alternative products, rather than requesting a new prescription from GPs
- Medicinal shortages due to border control delays will attempt to be minimised, with guidance instructing the prioritisation of medical supplies
Upon the subject of medical device and clinical consumable shortages, the letter explains that:
- Scotland will participate in the UK-wide National Supply Disruption Response (NSDR), which provides access to dedicated shipment channels for non-temperature controlled products
- In the event of medical device shortages, health providers will be expected to attempt to resolve this through the NHS National Services Scotland (NSS) in the first instance, who may then escalate the issue to the NSDR
For further information, please read the full letter here.