248 medicines are currently unavailable in the Irish market. New data from The Medicines Shortage Index reveal the figure marks an increase of 48 per cent on the number recorded last year.
Antibiotics, medicines to treat the common cold and 13 categories of eye drops amongst others, are proving difficult to import. Aideen Kenny of Azure Pharmaceuticals says unless pricing is addressed, many more medicines will disappear from the Irish market.
"One of the means we have to protect our domestic supply and to prevent these medicines running out is through pricing. And, failure to address this issue really increases the likelihood of manufacturers and medicines leaving the market. That is a real concern for the future," she added.