Formulary

The Department of Health is dedicated to ensuring that patients and service users have access to recommended medicines and medical devices. These are collected into lists, called formularies, by local NHS organisations. The formularies must be published online so that patients and service users can understand the treatments available on the NHS.

The Department of Health is dedicated to ensuring that patients and service users have access to recommended medicines and medical devices. These are collected into lists, called formularies, by local NHS organisations. The formularies must be published online so that patients and service users can understand the treatments available on the NHS.

NICE technology appraisals

The National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) advises the NHS regarding the treatments that should be made available. NICE is asked to review particular medicines and treatments when their availability varies across the country. These reviews are called NICE technology appraisals (TAs).

Read more about technology appraisals on the NICE website

Following the review, NICE makes a recommendation as to whether the medicine or treatment should be made available across the whole of the NHS. Once NICE has recommended a medicine or treatment, the NHS is then legally obliged to fund and resource it.

Under the NHS Constitution, patients have the right to receive medicines and treatments that are recommended in NICE TAs if their doctor thinks that they are right for them. When NICE recommends a treatment, the Trust must make it available within three months of that recommendation.

Formularies

Medicines that have been approved for use within the Trust are collected into a list, or formulary. Formularies are important to help ensure the safe and effective use of medicines. The Trust Medicines Management Group is responsible for reviewing requests for the introduction of new medicines to the formulary where a NICE TA does not exist. It also ensures that NICE TAs are incorporated into the formulary within three months of their recommendation.

All NHS organisations must publish information setting out which NICE TAs are included in their local formularies. Ours are set out below:

  • Mental Health and Allied Services (MHAS) Formulary: this applies to medicines that can be used for Trust service users receiving care from the following specialist services: mental health, learning disabilities, addictions and offender care.
    Mental Health and Allied Services Formulary  (opens word document)
  • North West London Integrated Formulary: this applies to medicines that can be used for service users under the care of the Trust within the North West London sector.
    North West London Integrated Formulary Policy Project
  • Milton Keynes Integrated Formulary: this applies to medicines that can be used for service users under the care of the Trust within the Milton Keynes sector.
    Milton Keynes Formulary
  • Camden Provider Services (CPS) Formulary: this applies to medicines that can be used for service users under the care of CPS specialist sexual health services within the Trust. CPS sexual health services work in close collaboration (under a service level agreement) with University College London Hospital (UCLH) to provide services.
    UCLH pharmacy formulary
  • Holloway Prison: in addition to the MHAS formulary, the following formularies apply to medicines that can be used in Holloway Prison:
  • North Central London Joint Formulary Committee: advises Commissioners and Provider Trusts in North Central London on appropriate, equitable, evidence-based and cost-effective medicines use. 
    Recommended medicines
  • Winchester Prison: In addition to the MHAS formulary, Winchester Prison uses the formulary produced by West Hampshire CCG.
    West Hampshire CCG formulary
  • Horton Rehabilitation Services: In addition to the MHAS formulary, Horton Rehabilitation services uses the Epsom and St Helier University Hospital NHS Trust formulary.
    Epsom and St Helier formulary
  • Other physical healthcare resources:
    • NICE guidelines – various guidelines relating to physical health conditions
    • CNWL guidance:
      • Smoking Cessation Pharmacotherapy Guidelines
      • Safer use of Insulin procedure
      • Oral anticoagulant procedure
      • Injectable anticoagulation procedure
      • Medical Gases Policy (includes oxygen)
      • Antimicrobial Prescribing Policy
    • Medicines Information department
    • BNF complete
    • NHS Choices website
    • Access to specialist CHS and Older Adults Pharmacists
    • Clinical Education Pharmacy sessions delivered on physical healthcare conditions and medication g. anticoagulation, UTI infections
    • Pharmacists screening drug charts and Pharmacy Endorsing Standards
    • Insulin e-learning package