Ireland makes 'watch list' of medicines threatened by Brexit

The Irish government has revealed it has made a ‘watch list’ of 24 medicines that it is concerned could be affected by Brexit, including essential drugs such as radiotherapy products.

Around 60-70 per cent of the 4,000 medicines marketed in Ireland come via the UK, said Taoiseach (Irish prime minister) Leo Varadkar, leaving the country vulnerable to any supply disruptions in its neighbour.

Minister for Health Simon Harris said that while the Department of Health did “not anticipate an immediate impact on medicines supplies” after March 29 as reserve stocks are built into the Irish supply chain, there are 24 products that may be sensitive to Brexit due to issues such as shelf life and transportation difficulties.

Mr Harris did not reveal which products were affected but said they related to intravenous foods and radiographers.

He warned against stockpiling medicines as steps have been taken “to minimise and address any risks to continuity of supply” and any stockpiling by individuals “will have unintended consequences”.

The list was announced as top Irish ministers revealed preparations the government has been making to minimise the impact a no deal Brexit would have on the country’s economy.

These preparations had been kept under wraps until Prime Minister Theresa May’s Brexit agreement was defeated in Parliament, seemingly increasing the likelihood of a no deal scenario.

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