Primary care prescribing costs have reduced 2.8 per cent over the past 12 months, according to the latest NHS statistical report.
The cost stands at £8.6 billion, following the third successive year of reducing costs. The rate of decline seen in 2018-19 is more than double that seen the year before.
Costs to the NHS of hospital prescribing dispensed in the community are also significantly down – 14.7 per cent – to £109m. This is the fourth successive year of reducing costs in this area.
However, overall prescribing costs to the NHS are up 4.1 per cent to £18.9bn, following a 11.1 per cent increase in hospital prescribing costs to £10.2bn. This is the third year of successively increasing costs in this area.
According to the NHS Digital report, Prescribing Costs in Hospitals and the Community, primary care prescribing in the community accounts for 45 per cent of total NHS prescribing costs/