The first publication includes data on valproate use by females aged 0 to 54 years, in England, from April 2018 to September 2020.
Valproate is a treatment for epilepsy and bipolar disorder which is known to cause harm to unborn children. The report provides information on prescribing in relation to pregnancies recorded in the registry. It does not provide a comprehensive review of the number of females affected.
NHS Digital is working in partnership with the Medicines Health Research Authority (MHRA) to develop Medicines in Pregnancy Registries in response to the Cumberlege Review.
The registries will provide the health and care system with the insights needed to track outcomes and make informed clinical decisions around the prescribing of medicines during pregnancy. They will also enable medicines regulators to monitor prescribing practices and adherence to pregnancy prevention programmes.
This report uses data from existing patient level administrative datasets specifically Medicines dispensed in Primary Care linked to the Maternity Services Data Set (MSDS) and Hospital Episode Statistics (HES) data.
This report is not an investigation but is an analysis of existing administrative patient data to enable the health system to understand the care and outcomes for these patients and consequently to improve patient care. Any gaps identified in the data will help inform the future development of clinical registry functions for medicine registries.
The core register for the valproate registry, which is the subject of this report, will be extended to all antiepileptics and provide a basis to develop medicines in pregnancy registries in other clinical areas.
This data is being published as management information.