Get ready for the improved BNF app

The British National Formulary (BNF) app helps busy healthcare professionals access essential medicines information quickly, offline and on-the-go.

Used by around 200,000 healthcare professionals every month, it continues to be a vital resource for those prescribing, dispensing and administering medicines.

Later this month an improved version will be available. If you’ve already downloaded the BNF app and switched on automatic updates, you will get instant access to the improved version. Otherwise, simply update your app to access the improved version.

What can I look forward to?

Colour-coded content

BNF and BNF for Children content will be colour-coded with clear labelling. You can easily differentiate between adult and child content and identify the right information for your patient; blue for BNF and pink for BNF for Children.

Intuitive design

The thoughtful design updates support the selection of safe and effective medicines – search Interactions with one click and swiftly move from section to section with the new menu.

July eNewsletter

The July newsletter contains the latest guidance and content updates to the BNF and BNFC. This month features new drug monographs, MHRA advice and Martindale: The Complete Drug Reference.

Previous eNewsletters can be found below:

July 2020

June 2020

May 2020

April 2020

March 2020

February 2020

January 2020

December 2019

November 2019

October 2019

September 2019

August 2019

July 2019

June 2019

May 2019

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Supporting the NHS with COVID-19 critical care information

Pharmaceutical Press from The Royal Pharmaceutical Society is today announcing the release of essential drug information focussed on supporting those working in critical care through the COVID-19 crisis. This is available to the NHS in England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales, and to MedicinesComplete users at no charge.

Critical Illness is a new resource planned for publication next year, providing healthcare professionals working in intensive care units with specific guidance to help them make confident and effective decisions in this high-risk environment. Due to these exceptional circumstances, all available content is being released now. 

Pharmaceutical Press Managing Director, Karen Baxter said “I am incredibly grateful for the dedication and effort shown by the team at Pharmaceutical Press and our expert editors who have worked around the clock whilst also continuing their patient-facing roles to ensure we release this essential content set. We are glad to be able to support frontline NHS teams with this vital resource at such a pressured time.”

The advance release of Critical Illness, compiled by consultants and specialist pharmacists working in critical care comprises 6 monographs and prescribing guidance considered core for critical care units that follow dosing outside of standard regimens and are specifically useful for adult COVID-19 patients.

Dr Cathrine McKenzie, editor of Critical Illness and a clinical academic pharmacist with over 25 years’ experience in critical care said “I am really delighted to partner with my intensivist colleague’s Dr Barbara Philips and Dr Chris Kirwan and fellow pharmacist Greg Barton to provide, what we hope is a dynamic prescribing text to support critical care at this time of intense need. I also want to thank all the antimicrobial and intensive care pharmacists for their input into this early release and finally to Pharmaceutical Press for their support in transforming our ideas into a valuable resource.”

For more information about Critical Illness go to about.medicinescomplete.com/publication/critical-illness/

About MedicinesComplete

MedicinesComplete makes it easy for healthcare professionals to access essential medicines information at the point of care. Trusted evidence-based resources include British National Formulary, Stockley’s Drug Interactions, Martindale: The Complete Drug Reference, Palliative Care Formulary and many more specialist resources.

Our skilled editorial team of clinical writers includes pharmacists and science graduates who triage new information, assess evidence and review changes made by other clinical writers before publication. Certain content is further assessed by external experts, committee and peer review. Ensuring clear, concise and actionable guidance to support confident decision-making on the use and administration of drugs and medicines, and effective patient care.

As the Royal Pharmaceutical Society’s knowledge business, we invest all our resources into creating independent and unbiased knowledge to promote best practice in medicines use.

For more information email marketing@rpharms.com

About Pharmaceutical Press

When healthcare professionals need to make the right decision, Pharmaceutical Press puts evidence-based pharmaceutical knowledge at their fingertips. Trusted worldwide for providing accessible clinical advice that improves patient safety, with an unmatched commitment to independently sourcing, evaluating and communicating the most accurate information. As the Royal Pharmaceutical Society’s knowledge business, we invest all of our resources into creating world-class tools that promote best practice in medicines use, which means healthcare professionals can quickly and confidently make the most informed decisions.

MedicinesComplete is a Pharmaceutical Press product from The Royal Pharmaceutical Society.

Prompt to update BNF App on iOS

We are aware that the BNF app on iOS is currently alerting all users to update their app, via a pop-up which states:

“Update available: A new version of this App is available which contains the latest BNF and BNFC content. Please update to the latest version”.

This is occurring for all users, irrespective of whether they are using the most up-to-date version.

If your app indicates that you are using version 2.1.21, and the October 2019 content update, then this is the most recent content and no update is required. You should choose “Later”, and the pop-up will disappear.

If your app indicates that you are using a version earlier than 2.1.21, or a content update dated earlier than October 2019, then you should update your app so that you are using the most up-to-date content. After updating, you may still be prompted to update again but you can choose “Later” so that the pop-up disappears.

We apologise for any inconvenience.

Celebrating 70 years of the BNF

70 years supporting you make effective decisions

Since 1949 the British National Formulary (BNF) has been the UK’s most trusted and authoritative healthcare resource, helping to ensure the safe and effective use of medicines at the point of care.

Over the past 70 years we’ve never lost sight of what’s important, and looking ahead we will continue to provide unrivalled guidance on prescribing, dispensing and administering medicines.

As part of our 70th celebration we want to share some behind-the-scenes detail about what makes the BNF special.

Find out more here

Do you have a success story about how the BNF has been pivotal in your healthcare career? We’d love to hear about it on social media, just use the hashtag #BNF70years

BNF Interactions

In 2017 the BNF interactions were rewritten to be more consistently structured, allowing users to find interactions more easily, and giving more information about the severity and evidence of an interaction. All interactions are listed under individual drugs. When checking interactions for combination drugs or co-drugs, it is essential to refer to each drug in the combination. The interactions section of the drug monograph clearly states the drugs (or drug classes) that need to be referred to in the interactions (Appendix 1 in print).

Co-trimoxazole

Please note that co-trimoxazole currently has its own entry in print that does not include the interactions for trimethoprim. As stated above, it is essential to refer to both drugs (trimethoprim and sulfamethoxazole, under sulfonamides) to find all relevant interactions for this drug. This inconsistency will be corrected in the upcoming September editions, BNF 78 and BNF for Children 2019-2020. Digital products including MedicinesComplete and the BNF app have been corrected for the June monthly update.

For information on how to use the BNF, see How to use BNF publications. For more information on how to use the interactions content, see Appendix 1 Interactions.

Important notice to users of the iOS and Android BNF and BNFC Apps

Please ensure that you update your BNF app before you access the content. A fix has been made to correct a technical error that was resulting in some content not appearing. Online web versions of the BNF are unaffected.

The correct version to run for the December 2018 monthly update is 2.1.8 (iOS) and 2.1.11 (Android).

Please note that all digital platforms are updated every month. For the most up-to-date content and functionality, please ensure that you are using the latest version.

Clarification of the Doses at extremes of body-weight statement for vancomycin in BNF and BNF for Children

In July, BNF and BNF for Children digital products were updated in line with the SPC to recommend weight-based dosing of intravenous vancomycin. The ‘doses at extremes of body-weight’ section erroneously included a recommendation about dosing based on ideal body-weight. Note that the manufacturer recommends that intravenous weight-based doses for all patients should be based on total [actual] body-weight.

BNF and BNF for Children digital products will be updated to reflect this recommendation in both BNF and BNF for Children in the next scheduled update in mid-August.

Clarification of the parenteral dose of quinine for the treatment of malaria in BNF and BNF for Children

The maintenance dosing recommendations for parenteral quinine for the treatment of malaria have been updated in the BNF and BNF for Children digital publications. The requirement to reduce the maintenance dose to 5–7 mg/kg if parenteral treatment is needed for more than 48 hours has been added to all parenteral dose statements.

These updated recommendations will be present in the June monthly update for all digital products of BNF and BNF for Children; these changes will also be reflected in the print editions for BNF 76 and BNF for Children 2018-2019.