The Irish Pharmacy Union has welcomed new Covid-19 prescription regulations.
The maximum period of validity of a prescription has been increased from six months to nine months.
Pharmacists can also give 10 days supply of medicines in an emergency and extend the range that can be supplied in an emergency for epilepsy.
GPs can also electronically transfer prescriptions to pharmacies.
IPU Secretary General Darragh O’Loughlin has described the new regulations as a “sensible and necessary development”.
He said the new regulations will streamline the prescribing process and they “are an acknowledgement of the professionalism and dedication of pharmacists. Above all, this development is good for Irish patients".
He said: “The secure electronic transfer of prescriptions to pharmacies via Healthmail from GPs and hospitals is a very welcome step forward and is something we have been advocating for some time. This will relieve some of the pressures on our GPs, pharmacists and patients in accessing prescriptions, cut down on unnecessary contact and eliminate the need for paper prescriptions.
“We would also like to reiterate the Minister’s reminder to patients and the general public not to seek supplies of medicines over and above their normal requirements, as doing so will hamper the supply of medicines for others.”