Pregabalin and gabapentin to be controlled drugs

From 1st April 2019, amendments to the Misuse of Drugs Regulations 2001 and the Safe Custody Regulations 1973 come into force which mean that pregabalin and gabapentin will be classified as Schedule 3 Controlled Drugs (CDs).

This follows Government consultation and recommendations from the Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs for additional safeguards to be put in place because of concerns around the misuse of these drugs.

Community pharmacy teams should note that pregabalin and gabapentin will be included in the list of “exempted drugs” in the safe custody regulations which means that they will not be required to keep these drugs in the CDs cabinet. This follows representations from PSNC and others that the usual storage arrangements for Schedule 3 CDs would not be practical for pharmacies to comply with considering the significant number of prescriptions for these drugs (see PSNC’s response to the Home Office consultation on proposals to classify pregabalin and gabapentin as CDs for full details).

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