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PDA: Why government must curb medicines demand to address shortages

The government should address medicines shortages by “reducing demand” from patients, the Pharmacists’ Defence Association (PDA) told C+D at the Pharmacy Show.

Director Paul Day echoed the PDA's letter to the chancellor in August by claiming the government should reduce this demand by “making sure that there aren't medicines being prescribed to people that don't really need” them.

It must also make sure medicines shortages are “avoided at all costs” in relation to Brexit, and that pharmacists are not put in “positions they shouldn’t be in” when it comes to explaining shortages to understandably frustrated patients, he told C+D at the event on October 7.

The effect of shortages on pharmacy teams is increased workload, which puts them “under more stress and pressure”, Mr Day added.

Earlier this month, the PDA published data from surveying its members that revealed that 62% of respondents spend over an hour a day dealing with stock shortages.

An investigation by C+D found that pharmacy staff suffer shortages in every major category of medicines. Read the rest of C+D's findings on medicines shortages, which received widespread coverage in the national media.

Watch the video to find out:

  • What other steps the PDA thinks the government should take to tackle medicines shortages
  • The effect shortages have on its members
  • How pharmacy employers can help out those on the “frontline”.

Which medicines are you struggling to source this week?

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