This section presents information on the number of prescriptions for drugs used to treat alcohol dependence and the Net Ingredient Cost (NIC) of these prescriptions. The data is extracted from a data warehouse hosted by NHS Prescription Services, which is part of the NHS Business Services Authority. NHS Prescription Services process prescriptions in order to reimburse dispensers.
The number of prescriptions is not the same as the volume of drugs prescribed. There will also be different practice locally on the duration of supply for a prescription.
The NIC is the basic cost of a drug as listed in the Drug Tariff or price lists; it does not include discounts, dispensing costs, prescription charges or fees.
The two main drugs prescribed for the treatment of alcohol dependence are Acamprosate Calcium (Campral) and Disulfiram (Antabuse). In May 2013 a new drug Nalmefene (Selincro) was launched.
Naltrexone is also prescribed for alcohol dependence. It is not included here however, as it can also be used to treat drug dependence and the condition that Naltrexone is prescribed to treat is not available within the PACT data.