Steve Williamson, MRPharmS (IPresc) from Northumbria Healthcare Trust, Newcastle upon Tyne, UK, discusses the practicality of prescribing and administering biosimilars at the 2017 British Society for Haematology (BSH) Annual Scientific Meeting in Brighton, UK. Electronic prescribing systems are now predominantly used in England, and biosimilars will be added to the system as they are released. This provides the opportunity for patients to switch to other biosimilars, however this will need to be approved by the clinician. He makes the distinction that patients will be able to switch, but they cannot be substituted by pharmacists. There are practical issues to be considered when prescribing some chemotherapy biosimilars, such as mabthera, in terms of the infusion rate. It is recommended that they are given at the SPC infusion rate to begin with, however, this can be adjusted with approval from local governance processes. As an increasing number of biosimilars come on to the market, prescribing and administering these drugs will become much more efficient. This video has been supported by Napp Pharmaceuticals Ltd through an unrestricted educational grant to Magdalen Medical Publishing.
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