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National Statistics
Publication, Part of

Prescription Cost Analysis - England, 2015

Official statistics, National statistics
Publication Date:
Geographic Coverage:
Geographical Granularity:
Date Range:
01 Jan 2015 to 31 Dec 2015


Prescription Cost Analysis (PCA) provides details of the number of items and the net ingredient cost of all prescriptions dispensed in the community in England. The drugs dispensed are listed by British National Formulary (BNF) therapeutic class.

The Prescribing by Dentists report will no longer be published separately in April, however the data is already included in this publication and a separate csv file is included this year purely with the dentists data. Please note the two csv files (PCA data and Dental data) should not be added together as the PCA data already includes the Dental data.

Further analysis of the PCA and Dental data will be published later in the year in the Prescriptions Dispensed in the Community publication.


In 2015, £9.27 billion was the cost of prescriptions dispensed in the community. An increase of 4.68 per cent from £8.85 billion in 2014.


In 2015, 1.08 billion prescription items were dispensed in the community. An increase of 1.79 per cent from 1.06 billion in 2014.


The 2015 data are provided from the links below in three formats:


1. Portable Document Format (PDF)
A summary factsheet of Items and NIC and the main report. In the main report, the number of prescription items dispensed for individual preparations, dressings or appliances is rounded to the nearest 100. There are a very large number of preparations/dressings/appliances where less than 50 items were dispensed in 2014. While accounting for nearly 40 per cent of the total number of preparations dispensed, such preparations covered just 0.01 per cent of the total items dispensed. In order, therefore, to keep the PDF file to a manageable size, such preparations have been excluded, although their figures are included in all total figures such as chemical entity and BNF groupings.


2. Spreadsheet (XLS) - Excel 2003 or later version in zipped format
An Excel file with the top 20 chemicals dispensed by both Items and NIC in a tabular and chart form and a zipped file of data on all preparations rather than excluding products where less than 50 prescription items were dispensed. The Excel zipped file therefore includes these totals for the following 7 levels of aggregation: Individual preparation, Chemical entity, BNF sub paragraph, BNF paragraph, BNF section, BNF chapter and Overall total.
The data in the file for prescription numbers, cost and quantity are given exactly.


3. Comma Separated Value (CSV) format
The Comma Separated Value file gives the number of prescription items dispensed for individual preparations, dressings or appliances exactly, for all preparations.

Administrative Sources



Related Links

Last edited: 22 June 2018 9:58 am