8 out of 10 UK pharmacists expect medicine shortages to get worse in the event of no-deal Brexit, reveals survey

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10th October 2019 12:10 - Pharmaceutical

8 out of 10 UK pharmacists expect medicine shortages to get worse in the event of no-deal Brexit: A survey of UK pharmacists has found that 81% are expecting medicine shortages are to get worse if the UK crashes out of the EU on October 31 without a deal, with 55% saying the shortages would be 'much worse'.

The PDA Brexit Medicines Survey, conducted by the Pharmacists' Defence Association (PDA) polled 1071 pharmacists and found that many are already dealing with issues around drugs shortages, with 62% reporting that they spend at least an hour per day doing so. 

When asked about their experiences over the last 12 months, nine out of 10 polled (90%) said that shortages of some medicines have increased, with a fifth of prescription drugs (21%) affected over the last three months. 

The PDA poll also asked if respondents were aware of any examples where medicine shortages had led to patient harm, with 25% answering 'yes'. 

Respondents left comments alongside their responses, which gave a greater insight into personal experiences which ranged from being unsure as to why the medicine shortages were occurring, concern over the stress is causing for patients and staff and increased workloads for community pharmacists. 

The survey questioned pharmacists working in community (68%), hospital (11%), GP Practice (7%), Locum (8%) and Primary Care sectors (3%), with the remainder (3%) saying 'other'.

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