||However, there are several caveats to this support: -
- In the entry in the BNF for these products, it is stated that they are an aid to smoking cessation, and should be viewed as an adjunct to counselling. The Guild believes that moving these products out of Schedule 10 is advisable, but that GPs should only prescribe these items if the patient is willing to commit to attending smoking cessation therapy.
- In many districts, the scheme to make one week's supply of NRT available free to smokers entitled to free prescriptions has been running for less than a year. This is too short a time to assess the success or otherwise of the scheme, although early results point to its success. Pharmacists and health promotion staff have invested considerable time and energy in this scheme, and it would be a pity to see its demise if supply on prescription became the norm. It is suggested, therefore, that the voucher scheme should be introduced for all people wishing to stop smoking, with those not entitled to free prescriptions paying a prescription charge for the initial week’s supply. This could be followed by a further supply, which could be purchased or on prescription as appropriate.