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Volume 129: debated on Wednesday 9 March 1988

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To ask the Secretary of State for Social Services if he will list for each year since 1975 the net ingredient cost per prescription given.

The average net ingredient cost of prescriptions dispensed in England for each year from 1975 to 1986 (the latest year available) is as follows:

Average Net Ingredient Cost per Prescription

To ask the Secretary of State for Social Services (1) why two prescription charges are made for a single course of Cyclo-Progynova tablets;(2) if he will list all single course treatment where more than one prescription charge is made;(3) what are the purposes for which a course of Cyclo-Progynova are prescribed;(4) if he will list those courses of treatment which are similar in purpose or similar in content to Cyclo-Progynova; and in each case what prescription charge or charges are levied;(5) who are the manufacturers of Cyclo-Progynova tablets; and what similar courses of treatment they provide which are available to National Health Service patients;(6) what revenue has accrued to the National Health Service from Cyclo-Progynova tablets and other courses of treatment respectively for which dual prescription charges are levied in the last full year for which figures are available.

To ask the Secretary of State for Social Services if he will make a statement about the practice of applying a double prescription charge for Cyclo-Progynova used in the treatment of cancer in women.

[holding answers 26 February and 4 March 1988]: A prescription charge is payable in respect of each quantity of a drug dispensed. Therefore, where more than one drug is required for a patient's treatment, more than one charge is payable, unless the patient is exempt.Packs of cyclo-progynova, which is licensed for the treatment of menopausal conditions, and for which the licence holder is Schering Health Care Ltd., contain two separate drugs. More details of the product and its uses may be found in the ABPI Data Sheet Compendium, a copy of which is in the Library. A comprehensive list of every other licensed product of similar purpose or similar content cannot be produced without disproportionate cost, but a list of the more widely used products of this nature may be found in the British National Formulary, which is also in the Library.I regret that information on the revenue from charges for cyclo-progynova is not available, nor is it possible to say how many courses of treatment result in more than one prescription charge.