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The Dermatology Council for England

Please click on the images below to access the latest news and updates on dermatology issues. 

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Tools for patients

The Psoriasis Association and The National Eczema Society have been collaborating with some

pharma to develop some tools for patients to feel able to speak up and talk to their doctor or nurse about the condition's full life impact. Please click the links below to access these resources.

Managing Mental Health issues in people with Chronic Skin Conditions


Article from the Nursing Standard about managing mental health and skin here


NHS guidance on over-the-counter prescriptions


In December 2019, Dermatology Council of England (DCE) met NHS England (NHSE) to raise its concern over the implementation of NHSE guidance on restricting the prescriptions of over-the-counter medicines. If you would like more information then please contact the Chair.


DCE provided NHSE with evidence showing that a number of patients with long-term skin conditions have been incorrectly refused prescriptions, particularly of emollients, because of the guidance and asked NHSE to consider clarifying and emphasizing the section on general exceptions. See below one of the original letter responses to DCE from Dr Bruce Warner:


Dear Mr Holmes,


Thank you for your letter raising concerns over the implementation of NHS England & NHS Clinical Commissioners guidance for Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs) on Conditions for which over the counter items should not be routinely prescribed in primary care. Professor Stephen Powis has asked that I reply on his behalf as a joint chair of the clinical working group, responsible for the development of the CCG guidance.

I am sorry to hear that the Dermatology Council for England feels that the guidance is being misinterpreted by some CCGs and the impact this is appearing to have on people living with chronic and severe skin conditions. The clinical working group did not intend for this guidance to be used as a mechanism to initiate a blanket ban on emollients. If CCGs have implemented the guidance as intended, patients with chronic and severe skin conditions should still be able to receive their emollients on prescription as it is a chronic condition. The recommendation in this guidance only applies to those with mild dry skin.


As you may be aware, NHS England expects CCGs to take the guidance into account in formulating local polices, and for prescribers to reflect local policies in their prescribing practice. CCGs need to take decisions on implementation locally, ensuring they take into account their legal duties to advance equality and have regard to reducing health inequalities. The guidance does not remove the clinical discretion of the prescriber in accordance with their professional duties

NHS England is working closely with NHS Clinical Commissioners on implementation and is monitoring implementation of the guidance, including unintended consequences. As part of this ongoing review process the clinical working group will take account of your feedback and specific suggestion that we consider clarifying and emphasising the section on general exceptions.


Yours sincerely,


Dr. Bruce Warner                                                  

Deputy Chief Pharmaceutical Officer                              

NHS England & NHS Improvement


Emollient Rationing


Andrew Proctor, Chief Executive of the National Eczema Society and a member of the DCE, has written an article on emollient rationing.  Read here




Several dermatology patient support groups have produced their own statement on emollients and fire risk.


National Eczema Society


Eczema Outreach Support



POSITION STATEMENT – Topical Steroid Withdrawal


The National Eczema Society  has produced a joint position statement recently with the British Association of Dermatologists (BAD) on Topical Steroid Withdrawal. Click here


Prescription-only medicines listed for sale in the UK

In March 2021, the Psoriasis Association received an update from the MHRA. Since they brought this issue to their attention, they have been able to arrange a meeting with Gumtree, where they discussed Gumtree’s policy on prohibited items (which does include prescription drugs/medicines, steroids and over the counter drugs) and confirmed with them that medicines and supplements are not permitted for sale through the platform.

The MHRA also assured them that a range of tools and filters are in place to ensure that prohibited items are not offered for sale on Gumtree, and filters include a broad range of brand names and generic terms.

For the full information follow the link:

The Psoriasis Association - 10 Year Impact Report


On the 14th October 2020, the Psoriasis Association launched a 10 Year Report Impact. You can read the report here











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