Skip to main content

Drugs: Risk Assessment

Volume 496: debated on Wednesday 15 July 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for Health whether (a) his Department and (b) the National Patient Safety Agency has undertaken a risk assessment of proposals for generic drug substitution. (286848)

No such formal assessment has been undertaken.

Patient safety will be paramount in taking forward the work on generic substitution. It has long been the Department’s policy to encourage generic prescribing where possible, for reasons of good professional practice and because of the opportunities for more effective use of national health service resources. However, we have always recognised that there are circumstances in which it may be clinically appropriate to prescribe a particular brand of drug even where a generic is available if the prescriber considers it essential for the patient to receive that specific product. This position will need to be maintained under any new specific proposals made as part of the work on generic substitution.