Controlled Drugs

Strict legal controls are needed for certain medicines. This is because they may cause serious problems like dependence (addiction) and harm if they are not used properly. Sometimes people use these medicines illegally for reasons that are not medical (drug misuse), and so extra safety measures are needed to make sure they are prescribed, supplied, used and stored safely and legally. Controlled medicines include some strong painkillers, such as morphine, and some tranquillisers and stimulants.

Prescriptions for controlled drugs can only be issued for a maximum of 30 days at a time.

You should never let anyone else take your medicine and you should always keep it well away from children.

It is important that controlled medicines are disposed of safely. Please return any unused medicines to your pharmacist so they can be destroyed safely.

Taking some controlled medicines might make you drowsy. This can be dangerous if you drive or operate machinery. It is an offence to drive if you are taking some controlled drugs over certain doses, please see the government’s information about drugs and driving: the law.

Dependency Forming Medications (DFM)

Some prescribed medications have a risk of dependency.

In line with current NHS England guidance, these medications will remain on the ‘acute’ medication list unless it is deemed appropriate by a doctor to be put onto your repeat list for specific circumstances.

Read more about these medicines here:

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