Pharmacy frequently asked questions during TT

If you have any queries please ring +44 1624 642633 or +44 1624 685166 and the query will be forwarded to a clinician.

Can a UK prescription be dispensed in the IOM?

Yes, however if the prescription is from a place where all patients do not pay for their medication (Wales/Scotland/NI), they would need to pay an IOM prescription charge, unless an IOM exemption applies). E.G a working adult from Wales would be exempt in Wales but would not be exempt here and be charged £3.85 per item.

If they have a pre-payment certificate in the UK this is not covered in the IOM.

If a patient presents with a dispensing token (for electronic transfer of prescription) this cannot be processed in the IOM, the patient needs to be issued with an emergency supply or contact their GP for a paper prescription to be issued. If the GP practice asks to send it via the spine this also cannot occur, as the IOM has no access to the spine. The UK based GP could fax or email (securely) initially but please ensure they are aware that they need to post the prescription to yourselves. Please note CDs cannot be faxed or emails

Patients must be aware that they cannot have a prescription part dispensed as the prescription needs to be retained at the pharmacy unless they have a private repeatable prescription, which should be clearly stamped that an issue has been given.

Can Emergency Supplies be given to visitors?

The Emergency Supply service in the UK is not valid in the IOM.

An emergency supply of the medication can be given if you are happy that the patient is on the medication (a simple phone call to their UK GP practice would confirm this). If multiple medicines it is preferable to ask for a fax or email confirmation.  

If the emergency supply is for a Controlled Drug  Schedule 4 or 5 CD, the maximum quantity that can be supplied is for five days’ treatment.

For any other POM, no more than 30 days can be supplied except in the following circumstances:

  • If the POM is insulin, an ointment, a cream, or an inhaler for asthma (i.e. the packs cannot be broken), the smallest pack available in the pharmacy should be supplied

  • If the POM is an oral contraceptive, a full treatment cycle should be supplied

  • If the POM is an antibiotic in liquid form for oral administration, the smallest quantity that will provide a full course of treatment should be supplied

NB: Pharmacists should also consider whether it is appropriate to supply less than the maximum quantity allowed in legislation.

  •  Professional judgement should be used to supply a reasonable quantity that is clinically appropriate and will last until the patient is able to see a prescriber to obtain a further supply

  • If the patient lives outside of the UK, it would be up to pharmacists’ discretion whether the medication is prescribed from a valid prescriber, i.e. if they had an empty box with a dispensing label under the patient’s name.  If a medication is unknown due to it not being produced in the UK, initially use Martindale/google to see if the medication has a UK equivalent

Are Southern Irish/ Channel Island private prescriptions valid on the island?

Yes, these would be treated as a private prescription, the pharmacist must be happy that the prescriber is a registered professional. Northern Irish ones are valid as well. 

From which countries can you accept foreign prescriptions from?

Approved countries comprise EEA countries and Switzerland: Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Republic of Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, The Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden and Switzerland. 

You would need to charge a private prescription for these medications

Which GP practices are happy to accept patients on a temporary resident basis if we are not happy about an emergency supply for whatever reason?

If a patient needs to register with a GP practice, they must be directed to the GP practice closest to their accommodation. If out of hours please direct to MEDS. A UK patient can register as a temporary resident, if outside UK they would need to be treated as a private patient.

What should we do if we receive a Controlled Drug script from a UK Drug & Alcohol Team?

Substance Misuse scripts from the UK can be issued in the IOM, however contact should be made with the substance misuse provider in the UK to make them aware that the prescription is being dispensed in the IOM and is being dispensed here. They may make contact prior to them arriving on the island. Please ensure the patient provides ID before issuing the prescription. If it is a Saturday, give the Saturday and Sunday dose and contact the appropriate team on Monday.

Can you preform a Minor Ailments or EHC consultation with a non-resident?

Pharmacy Services such as minor ailments and EHC can be offered to non-island residents. Google translate is a useful tool to use if English is not their first language.