To be filed under the banner "No Shit, Sherlock"
An article by Susan Mayor in the British Medical Journal [BMJ] shows that UK patients are better than reporting adverse drug reactions to the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency [MHRA] than doctors.
This should come as no surprise to most people. I have often wondered if pharmacists have to go to special schools to get to grips with doctors handwriting.
Analysis showed that patients’ reports of suspected adverse drug reactions were more likely to include information about symptoms (93%) than reports made by health professionals (78%) and to describe their extreme nature (47% versus 17% of reports). They were also more likely to explain the effect of the reaction on the patient’s life (47% versus 12%).
Mayor did well on this article, she even managed to get a quote in from June Raine:
June Raine, director of vigilance and risk management of medicines with the Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency (MHRA), said, “Medicines have important benefits; however, they may also have side effects. We welcome the results from this important study, which confirm the MHRA’s experience that patients make an important contribution to monitoring the safety of medicines through yellow card reporting.
“The findings from this study will help us continue to strengthen the role of patients as reporters to the scheme. The more reports the MHRA receives about suspected adverse drug reactions, the sooner we can relay important safety messages to the public and healthcare professionals—everyone benefits from better information.”
This is all well and good but the MHRA have been told countless times about how drugs effect the lives of those taking them.
Question is...what are they going to do about it?
Experience tells me that they will just log the report and... well, that's it.
It would be of interest if a study was undertaken to see how many of the patient reports the MHRA actually followed up. What protocol [if any] do they have in place to go and visit a patient who needs help tapering off an addictive antidepressant for example?
The MHRA's stance is thus:
SSRi medication is not addictive.
It does not matter how many reports they get regarding this issue, their reluctance to come out and agree with patients on this matter is blindingly obvious.
One would think that a regulator would help those it deems to protect - The patients.
Alas, my experience with them suggests otherwise.
As for the MHRA spokeswoman mentioned in the article, she [June Raine] was told by David Healy 11 years ago about the dangers of Seroxat. [LINK]
Read the new book, The Evidence, However, Is Clear...The Seroxat Scandal
US/CANADA COPIES HERE
UK/IRELAND FROM CHIPMUNKA PUBLISHING