MPs warn use of anti-malarial drug should be a ‘last resort’25 May 2016
Lariam is known to cause side-effects such as depression and anxiety
Defence Committee MPs have warned that an anti-malarial drug issued by the Ministry of Defence (MoD) to British troops should only be used as a ‘last resort’.
According to critics, Lariam, which was prescribed to at least 17,000 military personnel between April 2007 and March 2015, can cause psychological side-effects such as sleep deprivation, anxiety and severe depression.
A six-month inquiry by the Defence Committee found that “strong anecdotal evidence” suggests that the MoD prescribed Lariam to some troops without adhering to the manufacturer’s strict conditions.
The report also suggested that some military personnel would discard Lariam in knowledge of the drug’s potential psychological consequences, putting them at increased danger of contracting malaria in high-risk areas.
Lariam is one of a several anti-malarial drugs issued to military troops, however a senior military medic has advised ministers to prescribe alternative anti-malarial medication until it is proven to be safe.
Samantha Hemsley, national head of the serious injury and clinical negligence team at Thompsons Solicitors, said: “The inquiry into the safety of Lariam raises serious concerns about the MoD’s choice to prescribe a drug that is known to cause serious psychological side-effects.
“The general consensus is that Lariam should only be used in exceptional circumstances, however, it is extremely worrying to learn that despite the dangers of this drug being well-known, the MoD is reportedly failing to assess service personnel’s medical background before prescribing the drug.
“The MoD has a responsibility to safeguard personnel and must take on board the findings of the inquiry to urgently address the serious health implications posed by Lariam.”
Need compensation to get you back on track after an injury? Trust Thompsons Solicitors with your personal injury claim.
If you’ve been injured and would like advice on whether you have a case for personal injury compensation, contact Thompsons Solicitors’ personal injury solicitors today.
If you have suffered a personal injury that was someone else’s fault, whether it’s a slip or trip, an accident at work, in a public place or on the roads, we can help you to make a personal injury compensation claim and gain access to any rehabilitation you require.
Thompsons Solicitors’ commitment to acting only for the injured is written into our partnership deed. We are among the UK’s only claimant-only law firms, which means that we will represent the injured or mistreated person and refuse to act for employers or insurance companies. We know whose side we are on, and we are committed to securing a better deal for you.
Contact our friendly team of experts today for a free, no obligation assessment of whether you have a case. If you do, we’ll work with you to build a solid case for personal injury compensation that takes into account all of the ways you’ve been affected by your injury.
If you’d like more detailed information about how to start a claim before you call, visit our How to Make a Compensation Claim page.