Medicine Supply Notification: Salbutamol 2.5mg/2.5ml nebuliser liquid unit dose vials

Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) has issued a medicine supply notification for Salbutamol 2.5mg/2.5ml nebuliser liquid unit dose vials.

This MSN supersedes the National Patient Safety Alert issued on 26 February 2024.


Tier 2 – medium impact

Date of issue 6th March 2024

  • The supply position of salbutamol 2.5mg/2.5ml and 5mg/2.5ml nebules has improved
  • Salbutamol 2.5mg/2.5ml nebules will be in limited supply from mid-April until late June 2024.
  • Salbutamol 5mg/2.5ml nebules will remain available, however, cannot support an increase in demand.
  • Unlicensed supplies of salbutamol 2.5mg/2.5ml nebules can be sourced (see supporting information), lead times vary.
  • Alternative beta2-agonists for nebulisation and intravenous administration remain available, however, they cannot support an increase in demand.
  • Access to licensed salbutamol 2.5mg/2.5ml nebules will be actively monitored and prioritised for primary care and ambulance services who are less able to use unlicensed supplies.

Unlicensed products

The following specialist importer(s) have confirmed they can source unlicensed supplies of salbutamol 2.5mg/2.5ml (or 2.5mg/3ml) nebules (please note there may be other companies that can also source supplies):

If there is currently no listing on dm+d for the imported product for prescribers to select using their prescribing systems an EPS prescription for the unlicensed product cannot be issued. Where a prescriber wishes to prescribe a specially manufactured or imported product, an FP10 paper prescription should be issued as ‘Salbutamol 2.5mg/2.5ml (or 2.5mg/3ml)(Special Order)’ and endorsed by the pharmacy as a non-Part VIIIB special with the following information:

  • Amount dispensed over pack size used;
  • Invoice price per pack size from which the order was supplied less any discount or rebate;
  • Manufacturers’/importers’ MHRA licence number;
  • Batch number of the product supplied;
  • SP

A copy of this medicine supply notification, including further information, has been sent to all pharmacy NHS email addresses.

DHSC and NHSE/I have now launched an online Medicines Supply Tool, which provides up to date information about medicine supply issues. The contents of these MSNs can now be viewed on the Tool.

The Tool also details any changes to resupply dates and updates to the entries.

To access the Tool you will need  an NHS email address. Once set up and logged in, you will be able to access it online.

New shortages not listed on the SPS website, can be reported using our shortage reporting tool.