MEDICINE shortages across the UK are becoming “the new normal” and are being made worse by Brexit, a new report has revealed.

The research by healthcare charity Nuffield Trust found the number of warnings drug companies have issued about impending supply problems for certain products has more than doubled from 648 in 2020 to 1634 last year.

The most common medicine shortages are those used to treat patients with ADHD, Type 2 diabetes and epilepsy.

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Mark Dayan, the report’s lead author and the Nuffield Trust’s Brexit programme lead, warned: “The rise in shortages of vital medicines from rare to commonplace has been a shocking development that few would have expected a decade ago”.

The SNP’s health spokesperson Amy Callaghan (below) said the only way to tackle these shortages, caused by the impact of Brexit, was to gain independence in Scotland and rejoin the European Union.

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Commenting, Callaghan said: "It's clear that as well as hammering the economy, and raising the cost of living, Brexit is harming our NHS and putting the health of families at risk.

"Brexit has been a complete disaster but the Tories and Keir Starmer's Labour Party are both wedded to it - no matter the damage it causes to Scotland.

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"The SNP is the only party offering Scotland a route back to the EU as an independent country. It shows why voting SNP at the general election is essential to stand up for Scotland, protect our NHS and advance Scotland's journey to independence."

Responding to the report, the Department for Health and Social Care said most drugs remained available.

A spokesperson said: “Concessionary prices can arise for various reasons and cannot be linked to shortages.

“Our priority is to ensure patients continue to get the treatments they need. There are around 14,000 licensed medicines and the overwhelming majority are in good supply.”