Repeat prescriptions are generally for medications that are intended to be taken on an ongoing or longterm basis. For example:
- Blood pressure lowering medication
- Cholesterol-lowering medication
- Hormone replacement therapy
- Oral contraceptive pills
- Medications for chronic conditions
When a doctor or pharmacist prescribes a drug on repeat prescription they will authorise a set quantity of medication (usually a one month supply but can be up to 3 months supply). They will also set a limit to the number or repeat prescriptions that can be ordered before a review of the medication is needed – usually they will authorise enough repeat prescriptions to last one year.
The number and duration of repeat prescriptions is limited as many medications require monitoring at set intervals to ensure safe ongoing prescribing. Usually monitoring is in the form of blood tests.