Review of the Distribution of Healthy Start Vitamins Through Community Pharmacies

Report on the uptake of healthy start vitamin tablets and drops across Scotland.


1. With the exception of requiring the voucher, this is the same process of completing a CPUS form for other medicines supplies such as, urgent supply of medicines, smoking cessation products and Emergency Hormonal Contraception.

2. It should be noted that be noted some NHS Boards were instructed to stop issuing vitamins so that the community pharmacy pilot was given the best chance of success. This would have had a major effect on the women's vitamins distributed in these health board areas.

3. The first appointment pregnant women have with maternity services

4. Research published in 2013 found no relevant association between maternal vitamin D status in pregnancy and offspring bone marrow content in late childhood

5. Some pharmacies are registered as Healthy Start retailers

6. It should be noted the Minor Ailment Service is not an appropriate service for the supply of HS Vitamins as this service is designed to reduce the need for GP prescribing. Not all Healthy Start Vitamins and drops are eligible for prescription through GPs and not all GP patients are eligible for Healthy start (but eligible for the Minor Ailment Service or vice versa).

7. Research published in 2015 reported Health Practitioners experienced Healthy Start vitamin distribution as logistically complex, requiring the time, resources and creative thinking of a range of local and regional practitioners from senior strategists to administrative support workers.


Email: Douglas Armstrong

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