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NHS: Drugs

Volume 473: debated on Friday 14 March 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for Health whether the NHS will seek reimbursement from pharmaceutical manufacturers for expenditure on ineffective Select Serotonin Re-uptake Inhibitors. (193485)

We have no plans to seek reimbursement from pharmaceutical manufacturers in respect of Select Serotonin Re-uptake Inhibitors (SSRIs).

The Committee on Safety of Medicines Expert Working Group on the safety of SSRIs undertook a comprehensive review of the safety of this entire class of drugs, examining all available evidence and reviewing all the regulatory advice issued. In December 2004, it concluded that the balance of risks and benefits of all SSRIs in adults remains positive in their licensed indications; however prescribers and patients should be more aware of the side effect profile of these medicines and the need for close monitoring of patients being treated for depressive illness or anxiety disorders.