Continuation of Treatment Initiated Privately

Patients occasionally request NHS prescriptions for treatment that has been recommended following a private consultation.

In certain cases it may be appropriate to prescribe your medication as an NHS prescription, but the South East London prescribing policy that is applied to all our NHS prescriptions will be followed.

This policy is to ensure that the patient receives the best care by the most appropriate and safe means.

If your consultant prescribes a medication that falls outside a licensed indication or is outside the local recommendations on prescribing, your consultant will need to provide you with a private prescription, which you will be able to take to any community pharmacy for dispensing.

You will have to pay a charge for the medicines on this prescription even if you are normally exempt. This only happens on a few occasions, but it is in your interest that you are aware of this possibility before a private consultation.

NHS doctors are under no obligation to continue any medicine initiated privately.

When a GP prescribes a medicine, they take responsibility for that treatment and as such need to ensure a process for follow up and monitoring.

This is not always possible if the patient is seen by a consultant privately. Especially if there is limited follow up or the condition is not one that the GP has extensive experience in treating.