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Coronavirus: Salbutamol

Question for Department of Health and Social Care

UIN HL2875, tabled on 24 March 2020

To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to increase the availability of Ventolin; and what consideration they have given to enabling patients with symptoms of COVID-19 to purchase Ventolin without a prescription.

Answered on

6 April 2020

The Department has no current plans to enable salbutamol (for example, Ventolin by GSK) to be purchased over the counter without a prescription. The sale, supply and administration of prescription-only medicines, like Ventolin, are restricted by the Human Medicines Regulations 2012 which are designed to protect the public. The main route by which a pharmacist is able to sell or supply a prescription-only medicine is under the authority of a prescription.

The country is well prepared to deal with the impacts of COVID-19 and we have stockpiles of certain medicines, including salbutamol, in the event of any supply issues or significant increases in demand.