If you are given a prescription

If your medical team gives you an outpatient medication referral prescription, you need to take it to the Outpatient Pharmacy - this is located in Wallace Wing in Chelsea, and by the main reception in Sutton.

You will be only supplied medicines if:

  • your medicine needs to be taken immediately, for example painkillers or antibiotics
  • your medicine is only available from a hospital pharmacy.

You will not be supplied with medicines if:

  • your medicine was first prescribed by your GP
  • your medicine is not for an urgent condition
  • your medicine is not cancer-related
  • your medicine is not related to your outpatient appointment.

If you are started on a new medicine by The Royal Marsden, the first supply will be provided by the hospital pharmacy but further supplies may need to be obtained from your GP.

Why would the hospital not give me medicines?

If you need medicines that are routinely available in the community to treat long-term conditions these should be prescribed by your GP. It is better and safer that he or she continues to prescribe your medicines because they will have your up-to-date medical history.

If the hospital gives me medicines, how much will I get?

In most cases you will be given a maximum of 14 days' treatment. You may be supplied with less if your doctor has requested this.

For medicines that are only available from the hospital pharmacy or are needed for longer treatment courses, the hospital pharmacy will supply the full quantity.

If the hospital gives me medicines, will I have to pay?

Patients who are undergoing treatment for cancer, the effects of cancer or the effects of cancer treatment are exempt from prescription charges on medical grounds. If you have not already applied for your medical exemption certificate using the application form FP92A, you can get this from your medical team or pharmacy at The Royal Marsden or from your GP surgery.

How do I obtain further supplies if the hospital pharmacy cannot supply the medication?

The outpatient medication referral prescription cannot be taken directly to your local pharmacy. You must take it your GP who can then issue a prescription that you can take to your local pharmacy.

How long do I wait for my medicines?

We endeavour to keep waiting times to a minimum, but for certain prescriptions such as clinical trials or oral chemotherapy you may have to wait longer than for a regular prescription. This is due to the additional steps required by current laws and regulation to ensure the accuracy and safety of these medicines. The pharmacy staff will inform you of this when you hand in your prescription.

Before you leave the pharmacy, please make sure you understand when and how to take your medication as well as any associated side effects.