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It labels itself as “an independent professional publication that is kept up-to-date and addresses the day-to-day prescribing information needs”, whose use “throughout the health service helps to ensure that medicines are used safely, effectively, and appropriately”. Coming from many other sources, this could sound like a questionable boast, worthy of scrutiny, if not outright scepticism. But said by the British National Formulary (BNF), it borders on understatement. Originally launched in 1948, the BNF …

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