STRENGTH IN NUMBERS

Strength in Numbers dedicated to my late mother Kay

Drug shortages are ‘harming’ patients, say GPs

Patients are coming to harm due to drug shortages, GPs have warned, as a GPonline survey revealed four out of five GPs were pushed to prescribe second-choice medicines in the last year due to shortages.

In the GPonline survey of 441 GPs, 82% said drug shortages had forced them to prescribe a second-choice drug in the past 12 months. Just 12% said they had not, while 6% indicated they did not know. One in five (18%) of the GPs who had prescribed a second-choice drug said that patients had gone on to experience negative effects as a result, including harm or slower recovery. Another 43% said they were not aware of any adverse effects, and 39% said they did not know.

Many GP respondents expressed their frustration at the situation, which several reported had happened on a number of occasions. One said a patient had suffered because the medicine they needed was not manufactured for a time. Another said that, while no patients had experienced major effects, ‘some have complained of increased side effects’.

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Medicine pill capsules with medicine bottle on light background. Shallow Depth Of Field.

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