Jump to content

‘I had to do an 80-mile trip’: the stress caused by UK drug shortages

Patients have described the effect on their health and wellbeing of the “new normal” of drug shortages in the UK, which has led to three-month delays and 80-mile round trips to acquire medication.

Simon Bell, a 43-year-old data analyst from Tyne and Wear, has cystic fibrosis and requires medication that allows him to digest food. “For people with cystic fibrosis, the part of our pancreas which releases enzymes and allows us to digest food doesn’t work, so we have to take these tablets, which does the job of what’s missing from our pancreas,” he says.

Since the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic, Bell says he has been experiencing shortages of Creon 25000, the drug he takes, and once was unable to get his medication for more than three months.

Bell decided he had no choice but to stockpile the medication when he could get it, as the effects of going without the drug are much graver than taking a lower dose.

“I went three months without getting any, so after that I started just to build up stock by not taking my full amount of medication every month, so now I always keep three months’ supply. Doctors would never advise this but I feel like I have no choice,” Bell says.

The situation has prompted concerns for Bell that his other medications will begin experiencing shortages, which could make him seriously ill. “Kaftrio is an expensive drug that if we stop taking would make us really seriously ill,” he says. “If I couldn’t get hold of that medication that would have serious implications in terms of health, long-term health and my ability to work. It could be quite devastating.”

Read full story

Source: The Guardian, 18 April 2024


Recommended Comments

There are no comments to display.

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
  • Create New...