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National shortage of epilepsy medication putting thousands at risk

A national shortage of epilepsy medication is putting patients' safety at risk, consultants have said.

Medical professionals are becoming genuinely concerned as ever more frequent supply issues continue to bite tens of thousands of sufferers.

According to the Epilepsy Society charity, over 600,000 people in the UK have the condition, or about one in every 100 people.

Among them is Charlotte Kelly, a mother of two living in London who has had epilepsy for over 20 years. She must take two tablets a day to manage her condition but issues with supply have forced her to start rationing her medication.

Speaking to Sky News, Ms Kelly told us of the fear surrounding the restricted access to the medicate she needs to survive.

"I'm scared. If I'm truly honest, I'm scared knowing that I might not get any medication for a few weeks, or a couple of months, I just don't know when.

"It's scary to know that I have to worry about getting hold of medication. I do believe that something needs to happen very quickly because even if it's pre-ordered there's no guarantee you're going to get it.

Speaking to Sky News, Professor Ley Sander, director of medical services at the Epilepsy Society, says the supply concern is not just on the minds of patients but those in the industry too.

"It might be that we need a strategic reserve for storage of drugs, we might have to bring drugs over from other parts of the world to avoid this from recurring.

"We're not at that point yet, but this is an urgent issue."

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Source: Sky News, 21 January 2024


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