Call to punish GPs who over-prescribe antibiotics

18 August 2015


A leading figure from The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence has stated that 10 million prescriptions a year in England are inappropriate and unnecessary. He also argued that ‘soft-touch’ and ‘hazardous’ doctors should be disciplined for prescribing too many antibiotics.

Using antibiotics inappropriately for sore throats and colds increases the risk of resistance. Yet the number of prescriptions continues to rise..

Professor Mark Baker said that “People who overuse antibiotics are creating a problem for patients with life threatening infections”.

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Virtual GPs on the rise

Insurers such as Vitality Health, Aviva and Health Shield have launched a Virtual GP service in recent months- with more insurers expected to follow in their steps soon.

As expected, there are arguments for and against this service and the question has arisen-is this the future of healthcare, or another example of technology displacing a valued face-to-face interaction?

This idea has also been piloted by the NHS by conducting consultations via skype. At one London practice, 95% of patients said they would use the service again.

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