An expert in the supply chain has warned supplies of paracetamol will run out within two to three months.
Panic buyers stripped the shelves bare of medications the last month and the UK relies on India to make the tablets. But India is now in a strict lockdown, so no factories are making paracetamol.
Dr Sam Roscoe, who is the senior lecturer in operations management at the University of Sussex Business School, warned the UK is not in uncharted waters.
Dr Roscoe said the “buffer” that suppliers rely on to continue the flow of medicines after an increase in demand will soon run dry.
The Dr told the Express.co.uk, The pharmaceutical supply chain will have a buffer inventory to last two to three months depending on the products.
“Not only has there been a big spike in demand, there’s also been a massive decrease in supply.
“India is shutting down. Even if the factories remain open, people cannot get to work because public transport has been stopped.
“So, they are suffering from a labour shortage.”
Dr Roscoe added, “People are being very reactive to what they hear in the media and panic buying begets more panic buying.
“Anything to treat a fever is being sold out.
“So, the danger there for anybody who does come down with a fever even if it’s not coronavirus you don’t have the proper medication for it. How then do you treat it?
“Last week we went out to buy medication for my two-year-old and there was nothing left.
“The issue with paracetamol is that it is a generic product and I think that is why it’s been snapped up.
“Just to compound the issue further, India and China may decide they need these medications themselves.”
India has a population of 1.3bn people which will be testing for the authorities trying to keep the order in place.
In a televised address to the nation Modi said, “To save India and every Indian, there will be a total ban on venturing out of your homes.”