A HUSBAND has spoken out over four surgeries in the town refusing to prescribe a drug which can temporarily improve or stabilise the symptoms of Alzheimer's disease.
The Warrington Guardian reported in 2011 many relatives of Alzheimer’s patients had expressed relief prescriptions for memory-enhancing drug aricept would be available from GP surgeries rather than potentially lengthy regular trips to Hollins Park in Winwick.
But three years on the wait for Cinnamon Brow man David Hayes goes on as out of the 26 practices in the town, four of the GP surgeries nearest to him will not prescribe the drug.
Mr Hayes, whose wife Catherine was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s in February 2009, has repeatedly asked for answers and said he has grown increasingly frustrated by the responses.
The 66-year-old, who has to make seven trips to Hollins Park a year, said: “In 2011 the head pharmacist at Hollins Park confirmed to me all doctors in Warrington would dispense aricept.
“I ask why out of 26 practices in the Warrington CCG, Fairfield, Holes Lane, Padgate and Fearnhead will not prescribe it which are all strangely in one small area of Warrington.
“My wife’s Alzheimer's has progressed and aricept is no longer suitable.
“She is now being given memantine but it’s the same problem at our surgery on Holes Lane.
“Why can’t the four dissenting agree with the majority?
“I have to repeat myself 20 or 30 times sometimes to my wife and know I’m fighting a battle I can’t win so I’m now trying to attack something I can have an influence on.”
Mr Hayes added he was also upset to be told he would need to move practices as a solution but said health chiefs have now apologised for suggesting that.
John Wicks, Warrington CCG Interim Chief Officer said: “Every doctor is responsible for the drugs that they prescribe, including specialist drugs initially prescribed by a hospital consultant under a shared care agreement.
“The individual GPs at these practices do not currently feel comfortable that they can safely prescribe these specialist dementia drugs under shared care.
“Warrington CCG has emphasised to these GPs that the shared care agreement was developed in accordance with NICE Guidance and that 22 of the 26 practices in Warrington use this agreement.”