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Lloydspharmacy Reveals Over 11 Million Britons Risking Health by Taking Old Medicines
Date:4/4/2011

COVENTRY, England, April 4, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Lloydspharmacy, the community pharmacy chain, has revealed that one in four* (24%) of the population in Great Britain - or 11 million** adults - has taken or applied medicines which they later discovered were out of date.

Lloydspharmacy found that more than half (53%) of people do not always check the expiry date of medicines before taking them or giving them to a family member.

This is worrying considering that nearly one in six people (17%) never clear out their medicine cabinets. It presents the risk of expired medicines being used when they are no longer deemed safe. Many medicines become ineffective when they pass their expiry date and could also cause harm if they are taken by someone they were not intended for.

And they don't just pose a risk to the public's health. The annual cost to the NHS in unused medicines in the UK is around 396million pounds Sterling*** so it's important that medicines are managed effectively.

Additionally, nearly half (49%) the population do not throw away their out of date medicines correctly, either putting them in the bin, pouring them down the toilet or sink or simply keeping them in their medicine cabinet when they should be taken to a pharmacy or chemist to be disposed of safely.

Lloydspharmacy is running a 'medicines amnesty' in all of its 1,650 pharmacies where people can take in their old prescription or medicines to be disposed of properly****. For those who are on repeat prescriptions, the pharmacist can undertake a free Medicine Check Up***** to help manage medications and offer advice on how to reduce wastage.  

Melinda Setanoians, prescribing pharmacist at Lloydspharmacy, says: "Taking out of date medicines is not advisable. At the very least, they might not be as effective as usual. For example,
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SOURCE Lloydspharmacy
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