A worrying report by the PAC (Public Accounts Committee) has indicated that the Government is not prepared for a shortage of medicines from a ‘no-deal’ Brexit.
Chairwoman of the Committee, Meg Hillier, said: ‘Government cannot afford to drag its feet on this critical issue.”
The report stated that it was “worrying” that the Health Department “could not assure us of its plans to safeguard the supply of medicines after the UK has exited the European Union”.
Hillier said: “While the Department of Health and Social Care now has new powers at its disposal, it could not explain to us how these will better enable it to handle similar price increases and related shortages in future.
“This is unacceptable and doubly worrying in the context of uncertainty over supply chains after Brexit, particularly for medicines with a short shelf-life.
“Government cannot afford to drag its feet on this critical issue, either now or after Brexit. By the end of this year we expect it to demonstrate it has a clear plan to ensure patients can access the medicines they need, and to mitigate the impact of price rises on desperately stretched NHS resources.”
A Department of Health and Social Care spokesperson said: “The Government is confident of reaching a deal with the EU that benefits patients and the NHS is preparing for all situations.