The government has warned pharmaceutical companies to stockpile six weeks’ worth of medicines to prevent any disruption for when the Brexit transition period ends on 31 December.
In a letter published on Monday the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) advised pharmaceutical firms to boost their reserves, as ministers will not be asking for an extension to the Brexit transition period.
The DHSC wrote, “We recognise that global supply chains are under significant pressure, exacerbated by recent events with Covid-19.
“However, we encourage companies to make stockpiling a key part of contingency plans, and ask industry, where possible, to stockpile to a target level of six weeks’ total stock on UK soil.”
Medical suppliers were also warned to prepare for all scenarios, which comes as there is continued uncertainty whether or not a deal will be struck between the UK and the EU.
The British Medical Association (BMA) warned that stockpiling is “at best a short-term solution.”
Deputy council chairman Dr David Wrigley said, “With the transition period only months away and at the height of what will be an undoubtedly difficult winter, this is incredibly concerning.
“The BMA has consistently warned that a no-deal Brexit could have a potentially devastating impact on the NHS and consequently the health of the nation.
“Now, more than ever, it is absolutely crucial that the Government secure a relationship that protects the future health of this country.”