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Parliamentary debates and questions

S5W-06210: Maree Todd (Highlands and Islands)

Scottish National Party

Date lodged: 16 January 2017

To ask the Scottish Government what advice the NHS gives to patients regarding the risks associated with self-medicating.

Answered by: Shona Robison 27 January 2017

NHS inform, Scotland's digital health and care information service provides reliable, quality assured information to the public across a range of channels including online, telephone (0800 22 44 88 8am-10pm), web-chat and social media. The website contains advice and self-help guides on a range of conditions and managing symptoms. Importantly, this includes advice on self-medication where this is appropriate and when to get help from your GP or NHS 24's 111 service. It also contains advice about medicines and their use as well as information on managing medication. Links to the relevant NHS inform web pages are provided below:

https://www.nhsinform.scot/self-help-guides

https://www.nhsinform.scot/tests-and-treatments

https://www.nhsinform.scot/healthy-living/preventing-falls/keeping-well/how-to-manage-your-medication

An important community resource is the community pharmacist who is available to provide expert advice and support on prescription medicines and self-care treatments.

In addition, packaging regulations require that each medicine is accompanied by a Patient Information Leaflet which contains important information for the safe and effective use of the medicine. UK-wide legislation requires these to be made available to all patients and in all packs.