Sheffield pharmacy hit by medication shortages 'exacerbated by Brexit' says patients are directing abuse at staff

A Sheffield pharmacy says it is struggling with a medication shortage ‘exacerbated by Brexit’.

Thursday, 12th May 2022, 2:48 pm
Updated Thursday, 12th May 2022, 2:48 pm

London Road Pharmacy says it and stockrooms across the nation have been hard pressed to get in medicines even as generic as paracetamol.

They include treatments for HRT, epilepsy, acne, contraception, and many others. Popular brands like Beechams, Calpol, and Gaviscon have also been affected by supply issues.

A spokesperson said it was a “sensitive issue” faced by “all pharmacists” that has been exacerbated by Brexit.

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A Sheffield pharmacy says it is struggling with a nationwide shortage of medications. Image from Pixabay.

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In a statement released this week, the spokesperson said: “Rising costs of raw materials, staff resources, fuel and energy are affecting supply in all industries. We must also be aware of the impact of Brexit on these rising costs.

"Ultimately, it is the patient who suffers in the end. Unable to receive the medication they need, many patients become angry and direct abuse at pharmacy staff.

"Though still a sensitive subject, Brexit has exacerbated the situation. With workers returning to their countries of origin, there are no longer enough people available to work these difficult jobs at wholesaler depots and distribution centres.”

Pharmacists nationwide are reportedly now spending more time trying to source medication from wholesalers or other pharmacies, and ultimately can’t get hold of them. Wholesalers frequently do not have enough staff in warehouses and depots to pick the meds, nor enough drivers to deliver them.

For London Road’s staff, this means they typically place an order only to receive missing tote boxes, incorrect deliveries, and the supply of too little or too much medication.