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GPC condemns OTC proposals for statins

The GPC has raised serious objections over Health Secretary John Reid's plan to make statins available over the counter for patients at 'moderate risk' of coronary heart disease.

The POM to P switch for simvastatin 10mg – due to be announced this month – was put out for consultation last year to stiff opposition from GPs.

The GPC said it generally supported moves to make drugs more easily available through pharmacies without GP prescription – but not in this instance.

GPC chair Dr John Chis-holm said: ' It's pushing provision into the private sector. The dose allowed is pretty low anyway and there are concerns at the risk of treatment and potential side-effects. If it's worth doing it should be equitably available to all patients.'

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