A question we frequently get asked at LINC is, “How can I get a LINC catheter added to my regular prescription?” Many users trial a LINC catheter, love it, but then don’t know how to get hold of one on a regular basis. Here are 5 easy steps to ensuring you get a LINC catheter on prescription every time.
1. Know the facts
For your doctor or nurse to prescribe any product, it must first be available on the drug tariff. This a central list of approved medicines and equipment that the NHS has agreed to fund. All LINC catheters are listed on the drug tariff and are therefore available on prescription. You can find the drug tariff online here. We think users should be aware of the range of products available to them.
2. Know the product code
Before asking your doctor or nurse to prescribe a LINC catheter, make sure you know the correct code. This can be found on both the catheter box and the catheter packet. If you are not sure of the code, you can find all of our catheter order codes online. All you need to know is your catheter length (standard, female or paediatric), Ch (charrier size), and tip required.
3. Ask your healthcare professional to prescribe it
Before you are due for your next catheter change, phone or meet with your healthcare professional and ask them to prescribe the LINC catheter you would like to use. Explain why you would like to change your catheter and give them the product code.
4. Answer objections
Some catheter users find that their healthcare professional is resistant to
letting them change to a LINC catheter. Here are some of the objections you might hear and answers you can give.
I don’t know the product
Just because they haven’t heard of LINC Medical doesn’t mean they can deny you access to a LINC catheter. Explain to them that the LINC catheter is listed on the drug tariff and available on prescription. You can also point out that the official NICE Guidelines (which all UK healthcare professionals should follow) state that, “The indwelling catheter you are offered will depend on your particular characteristics and requirements, with your comfort and preferences being important factors. Your healthcare worker should talk with you about the options.” Let them know that you find the LINC catheter more comfortable than other catheters you have used.
The indwelling catheter you are offered will depend on your particular characteristics and requirements, with your comfort and preferences being important factors. Your healthcare worker should talk with you about the options.
It’s not on formulary
Most areas (knowns as Clinical Commissioning Groups or CCGs) have a preferred list of continence products that they require healthcare professionals to prescribe. If you live in an area where LINC products are not on the preferred list, you may find some healthcare professionals refuse to prescribe them. But just because something is not on a formulary doesn’t mean it can’t be prescribed. Many healthcare professionals aren’t aware that they are free to prescribe any product as long as there is a clinical reason to. Up to 20% of products prescribed in any area can be non-formulary products. So if you hear this objection, let your HCP know the ways you find the LINC catheter beneficial. Then remind them that they are allowed to prescribe off-formulary products if they provide additional clinical benefits.
It’s too expensive
Some of our specialist catheter tips are listed on the drug tariff at higher prices than other catheter makes. That may make a cost-conscious HCP think twice before prescribing a LINC catheter for you. But what many HCPs don’t realise is that for every prescription of a LINC catheter, the NHS saves up to £17.34 compared to even a cheaper standard catheter. That’s because we include a free lubricant gel with every catheter. That saves the NHS the cost of the gel and also all the other prescription fees that they pay on top.
5. Submit the prescription to your preferred supplier
Once you have received the prescription, you can then send it your chosen delivery company or your local pharmacy. We supply to all continence delivery companies and all major pharmacy wholesalers. We always recommend working with independent delivery companies who have good reputations for customer service and stock levels. If your chosen supplier tells you they are out stock, contact us and we will be able to help you get hold of the product.
Are there any other issues you have experienced when trying to get a prescription for a LINC catheter? If so, contact us and let us know and we’ll do our best to help.
This post does not constitute medical advice. Please discuss any changes to your care or concerns with your healthcare professional.