NHS launches latest report on prescribing costs
NHS Business Services Authority (NHSBSA) has released a report on 'Prescribing Costs in Hospitals and the Community for England in 2022-23'.
The total cost to NHS commissioners in England, for the issue of medicines, appliances, and medical devices in 2022/23 is estimated to be £18.5 billion.
This includes a deduction of £674 million for central rebates. The total cost without central rebates was £19.2 billion, an increase of 7.99% from £17.8 billion in 2021/22.
In 2022/23, the cost to NHS commissioners in England for medicines prescribed in primary care and dispensed in the community was £9.59 billion (50% of total expenditure).
Medicines prescribed and dispensed in the community, by hospitals, cost £93.6 million; and by dentists cost £32.4 million. Medicines prescribed and dispensed in adult prisons and detention centres cost £24.9 million.
The cost of medicines issued in hospitals was £9.45 billion (49.2% of total expenditure).
In 2022/23, drugs within the BNF (drugs category) ‘Malignant Disease and Immunosuppression’ had the highest spend - £3.26 billion for items dispensed in the community. This was the Net Ingredient Cost (NIC), i.e. before any discounts. Of this spend, £3.09 billion was for medicines issued and dispensed in hospitals.
The average costs per capita when using NIC for items dispensed in the community for medicines, appliances, and medical devices prescribed in England in 2022/23 across all settings was £349. This is an increase from £324 in 2021/22.
To read the full report go to https://www.nhsbsa.nhs.uk/statistical-collections/prescribing-costs-hospitals-and-community-england.
Notes to editors
Please note - These statistics cover the financial year, not calendar year. There are also some monthly statistics included at a national level.
Net ingredient cost (NIC)
This is the basic cost of a drug as used in primary care. This is the cost at list price excluding VAT, i.e. the price listed in the national Drug Tariff or in standard price lists and is not necessarily the price the NHS paid. It does not take into account any contract prices or discounts, dispensing costs, fees or prescription charge income, so the amount the NHS paid will be different.
NIC is used in Prescription Services reports and other analyses, as it standardises cost throughout prescribing nationally, and allows comparisons of data from different sources.
See the ‘Definitions’ section of the report for further explanation.
British National Formulary (BNF)
These statistics use the classifications defined in the BNF to group medicines together based on their primary medical treatment. See the ‘Definitions’ section of the report for further explanation.