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Medicine expiry dates

Expiry date printed on a medicine pack

We are all familiar with ‘best-before’ and ‘use-by’ dates on food. Medicines are very similarly labelled.

If you look at the packet of your most recent medication, you will see stamped on it somewhere, an expiry date. But what does this expiry date really mean?

Although generally not recommended, we may sometimes choose to eat certain foods beyond their ‘best before’ date. But can we do the same with medicines?

 Is it really necessary to throw away, and waste, unused medicines?

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Can you buy generic Champix (varenicline)?


Not yet. Champix is the only brand name of the drug varenicline currently available in the UK or the EU. Champix was patented in 2006, and remains under patent until September 2021 in the UK/EU – in the USA it is patented until 2020 under the brand name of Chantix, so it cannot be legally sold until the patent expires.

The active medical ingredient in Champix is called varenicline. Varenicline is the generic name of the product.

Champix is prescription-only medicine.

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Easier ways to take your Pill – new recommendations for 2019

Combined contraceptive pill packs

But have we really been doing it wrong for 60 years?

The press reported this week that since the contraceptive pill was first launched – and this was 60 years ago! – we have all been taking it incorrectly! They also stated that one of the reasons behind this was to please the Pope!

Let’s try and put this medical conundrum into understandable terms, and try to prevent confusion!

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New Year’s Resolutions 2019

What is a New Year’s Resolution?

New year resolutions 2019At New Year on 01 January, we set ourselves personal goals for the coming year. Read on and be inspired!

What’s your New Year’s resolution? Listed below are some great ideas for a healthy New Year!

Good health – a new year, and a new you!

My biology teacher once said to my class at school:

YOU are representative of everything you have ever put into your mouth!

Everything you put in your mouth has consequences – whether it’s food, alcoholic drinks, cigarettes, or drugs/medicines. Read in full

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Find that hangover cure!

Man asleep at desk holding bottle with a hangover

So – it’s January 1st 2019! …And you’ve woken up feeling like you might be better off dead. Like most of the rest of the nation.

In fact, the only cure for a real hangover – is death!

William Faulkener, American Nobel Prize winning author
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Concerns over pharmacy websites not registered with the Care Quality Commission

Online doctors Uncovered - BBC Panorama

On Monday 6 August 2018 BBC Panorama aired an investigation into Online Doctors Uncovered which cited safety concerns over websites selling prescription drugs.

Professor Steve Field, chief inspector of general practice for the Care Quality Commission (CQC), has said:

You should look for the CQC logo because some of these websites, if they are not regulated by the CQC, can be very, very dangerous.

We know that these websites can present convenient ways for people to access advice, treatment and medication.

However some services may be putting patients at risk. We are particularly concerned that risks to patients may not always be appropriately assessed or managed when they buy medicines online.

As with conventional GP surgeries, these online companies and pharmacies are required to provide safe, high-quality and compassionate care and must adhere to exactly the same standards. They must not cut corners.

We will continue to work closely with the other regulatory bodies to share intelligence where we have concerns and take action where necessary. Providers and clinicians must be clear on their responsibilities to protect people who use their services.

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