Prescribing Policy For Patients Travelling Abroad
This policy outlines the procedure for patients travelling abroad for short and long periods of time.
By law, the NHS ceases to have responsibility for the medical care of patients when they leave the UK. In addition GPs are not required by their terms of service to provide prescriptions for the treatment of a condition that is not present and may arise while the patient is abroad.
The NHS does accept responsibility for supplying ongoing medication for temporary periods abroad of up to 3 months. However, if a person is going to be abroad for more than 3 months, then they are only entitled (at NHS expense) to a sufficient supply of regular medication in order to get to their destination, where they should the find an alternative supply of that medication.
Patients residing abroad for a period of more than 3 months should be removed from the registered patient list.
Llanfyllin practice Policy
Travelling out of the country for less than 3 months
For patients who inform us they will be out of the country for less than 3 months, we will provide sufficient medicines for an existing condition (e.g. asthma, diabetes…)for the period while the patient is away where it is safe to do so. Drugs that require frequent monitoring may not be prescribed where there are safety concerns. 1 months supply only will be issued for drugs normally available over the counter, such as paracetamol. Please allow at least 7 days’ notice in order for us to prepare these medication for you and deal with any issues arising.
Travelling out of the country for more than 3 months
Patients who inform us they will be leaving the country for more than 3 months will be prescribed sufficient medication to enable them to make alternative arrangements at their destination (up to 3 months supply where safe to do so). They will also be removed from our patient list. We will be pleased to re-register patients on their return to residence in the UK and can reassure patient that their electronic notes are kept on file for reference on your return. Patients and relatives should not seek medication for themselves while they are abroad as this constitutes NHS fraud.
Prescriptions for medicines in case of illness while abroad.
GP’s will only prescribe NHS prescriptions in this case for exacerbations of pre-existing illnesses. Eg antibiotics for patients who have frequent infections secondary to an underlying lung condition.
GPs may provide private prescriptions if it is clinically appropriate and they can be self-administered safely without medical assessment while abroad. These prescriptions are not free.
Patients should be aware that some drugs commonly prescribed in the UK may be illegal in certain countries and you should check with that countries embassy before you travel.
Requests for letters
If you require a letter from the practice confirming your current medication (for example for customs and immigration purposes), then please note that there will be a charge payable of £25 per letter. This is considered to be non-NHS work and so is chargeable as a private service. A request for a travel letter may take up to 5 working days to process.
We are able to provide patients with a copy of their current repeat prescription without charge, and this can usually be supplied straightaway. Please note that this must be requested in person by the patient at the surgery (unless there is consent in place for another person to discuss their medical care on their behalf).
See NHS facts of travel abroad