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Anti-obesity drug Orlistat to go on sale without prescription in UK pharmacies

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The anti-obesity drug Orlistat (alli) will soon be available without prescription in UK pharmacies.

The anti-obesity drug Orlistat (alli) will go on sale in the next few months and with pharmacists and pharmacy assistants tasked with assessing whether or not it is suitable for the patient.

Preliminary approval was given in October and European regulators have since granted the licence allowing it to go on sale.

Made by made by GlaxoSmithKline, Orlistat costs £1.45 a day and it will be available to adults with a BMI of 28 or more in all 27 EU countries.

A spokesman for the company said it is the first time a non-prescription weight loss drug has been authorised by the European Commission.

Professor Steve Field, chairman of the Royal College of GPs, said: "GPs would always advise patients to be cautious about taking slimming pills - especially those that can be obtained over the counter without seeing a GP first.

"Any patients who have concerns about their weight should consult their GP."

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