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In the UK, the British National Formulary (BNF) is one of the few medical publications that is used every day by thousands of doctors, nurses and pharmacists to support patient care. It more than meets its aim of providing ‘prescribers, pharmacists and other healthcare professionals with sound up-to-date information about the use of medicines’ and it has helped several generations of healthcare professionals to prescribe safely.1 Given its status as ‘the definitive UK source of practical guidance on how to use, and not misuse, drug therapy’, it is worth reflecting on the announcement that the 86th edition of the BNF and the 2023–2024 edition of the BNF for Children (BNFC) will be the last print issues to be purchased by the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) for the NHS in England.2 3
A national formulary, in various guises, has been in use for over 80 years and predates the NHS. In 1941, a National War Formulary was published to provide ‘a …
Competing interests None declared. Refer to the online supplementary files to view the ICMJE form(s).
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