Atorvastatin, a medicine to treat high blood cholesterol, is the most dispensed drug with 59 million items in England in 2022/23, revealed the NHS Business Services Authority (NHSBSA) on Thursday (8 June).
While Apixaban (an anticoagulant) was the drug with the highest costs of £430 million. Apixaban 5mg tablets had the largest increase in cost between 2021/22 and 2022/23 in England, with an increase of £280 million.
NHSBSA’s annual statistics report ‘Prescription Cost Analysis-England 2022/23’ published also has revealed an eight per cent rise in the prescription items that were dispensed in the community in England.
The report highlighted that in 2022/23, 1.18 billion prescription items were dispensed at a cost of £10.4 billion in the community in England, witnessing an increase of eight per cent from £9.69 billion in 2021/22.
Compared to 2014/15, the cost has increased by 17 per cent or £1.48 billion. This marks the fourth year in a row where the cost of items dispensed has increased, after seeing a decrease in the previous three years from 2015/16 to 2018/19.
The report also showed the number of drugs and medical devices (such as blood glucose monitors) dispensed in the community in England increased by 3 per cent to 1.18 billion, from 1.14 billion in 2021/22. Compared to 2014/15, this number has increased by 10 per cent.