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Serious shortage protocol for fluoxetine 40mg extended to October

The Department of Health and Social Care has extended the serious shortage protocol (SSP) for fluoxetine 40mg capsules until October 2.

The SSP, originally issued in May, was originally set to expire on July 20. However, its expiration date has been extended several times since.

The new expiration date for the SSP is October 2, the Pharmaceutical Services Negotiating Committee (PSNC) said last week (September 25).

Under the protocol, pharmacists can supply an alternative of two fluoxetine 20mg capsules for every fluoxetine 40mg capsule they need to replace.

The new expiry date for the SSP “may be brought forward or extended, and the content may be amended throughout this period”, PSNC said.

“Pharmacists should ensure they are using the current version of an SSP before supplying an alternative product,” it added.

Reimbursement is “for the medicine supplied in accordance with the SSP and not the originally prescribed medicine,” PSNC said.

This means that under the SSP, contractors will be reimbursed the drug tariff part VIIIA price for the fluoxetine 20mg capsules dispensed, “or any concessionary price granted, where applicable”, the negotiator explained.

The reimbursement price will account for VAT payment and supply in accordance with the SSP will result in the contractors being paid one “single activity fee”, currently at £1.27, and “one SSP fee”, currently at £5.35, PSNC said.

Has this SSP helped you provide a better service to your patients?

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