Benzodiazepine Prescribing Policy

This policy outlines current prescribing practice for benzodiazepines at the group practice. Benzodiazepines include medications such as diazepam, lorazepam, temazepam, zopiclone and zolpidem.

The long-term use of benzodiazepines carry numerous risks and can cause a number of health complications. We recently reviewed, as per national guidance, the way in which we prescribe and monitor these medications.

It is now routine practice that we will not issue these medications on repeat prescription.

If you are currently prescribed these medications, they will be reviewed regularly at an appointment with the GP either at the practice or via telephone. The length of time between reviews will be arranged at these appointments. Regular trial of reduction of these medications is routine practice across West Lothian.

If you register with the practice and are currently prescribing of these medications, you will be asked to arrange an appointment in surgery with GP to look at how these may be reduced over time and to set out arrangements for review.

It may be that these medications are issued for a weekly fortnightly on monthly basis at the discretion of the reviewing GP.

It is the responsibility of the patient to ensure medications are stored safely. If misplaced damaged or stolen a replacement supply will not be provided earlier than the due date of the original prescription.

It will not be possible to have medications issued early with our prior discussion with GP.

If there are ongoing issues or concerns relating to the safety of prescribing these medications the patient may be asked to see review from community addiction services to aid with ongoing management.