The legislation needed to provide a defence against dispensing errors is unlikely to be laid before Parliament until autumn 2016 at the earliest, it has emerged.
The Scottish and Welsh parliamentary elections, which take place in May 2016, need to allow time for administrations to settle in, which means it is unlikely that the necessary regulatory order will be laid before Parliament in summer 2016, according to a statement by the UK Government’s Rebalancing Medicines Legislation and Pharmacy Regulation Programme Board.
The board also points out that the UK parliamentary recess, which runs from July until September, also means it is unlikely that the order will be laid before autumn.
The statement follows the board’s latest meeting held on 24 November 2015. It is due to meet next on 7 April 2016.
The board was set up in 2013 to review medicines safety legislation and regulation across the UK; one of its key tasks has been to set in motion the necessary statutory steps needed to bring about the decriminalisation of dispensing errors.