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Medicopolitical Digest

Medicopolitical digestBMA calls for guidelines on new and expensive drugsJuniors to be surveyed on 48 hour directiveJunior doctors want higher rates for 1999-2000 new yearGPs submit proposals on the $60m job weight awardYoung people's health surveyed

BMJ 1999; 318 doi: (Published 02 January 1999) Cite this as: BMJ 1999;318:63

BMA calls for guidelines on new and expensive drugs

The BMA has called for guidelines for doctors on the prescribing of new and expensive medicines so that patients receive unambiguous information. But it also said that clinical guidance from the government on sildenafil (Viagra) was “almost irrelevant” because general practitioners had had no alternative but to prescribe it on the NHS to their patients where clinically indicated.

The chairman of the BMA council, Dr Ian Bogle, has told the health secretary that the council was disappointed that guidelines on prescribing Viagra had still not been issued. In his letter to Mr Frank Dobson, he says, “Doctors have been placed in an impossible position: on the one hand they are mindful of the department's request not to prescribe Viagra, but on the other have to respond to the needs of their patients. Indeed, to refuse to prescribe this licensed medicine on an FP10 form when it is clinically necessary would leave GPs open to accusations of breaching their terms of service.”

Juniors to be surveyed on 48 hour directive

The Junior Doctors Committee is planning to survey doctors for their views on …

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