The NHS spends £16.8 billion a year on medicines (£1 in every £7 that the NHS spends) and they are the most common treatment in the NHS.
Medicines help a lot of people to get well, but:
- Up to 50% of patients don’t take their medicines as intended meaning their health is affected;
- Around 5-8% of hospital admissions are medicines related, many of which are preventable;
- Medication safety continues to be a serious issue;
- Bacteria are becoming resistant to antibiotics through overuse which is a global issue;
- Use of multiple medicines is increasing – over 1 million people now take 8 or more medicines a day.
The Innovation Agency is supporting the national medicines optimisation programme to deliver 4 programmes of work: