UK Pharmacies Seeing Less Medicine Deliveries Due to Fuel Crisis, Pharmacy Association Says
© AP Photo / Peter ByrneA pharmacist prepares to administer coronavirus vaccines to waiting recipients at Andrews Pharmacy in Macclesfield, England, Thursday Jan. 2021
© AP Photo / Peter Byrne
LONDON (Sputnik) – UK pharmacies were seeing less deliveries of medicines as a result of the fuel crisis and the shortage of truck drivers in the United Kingdom, although there is no shortage at the moment, a spokeswoman for the Association of Independent Multiple Pharmacies (AIM) confirmed to a Sputnik correspondent on 4 October.
"It's not a shortage at the moment but in some areas we have seen some reduction in the number of deliveries to our pharmacies," she said, adding that they have a good contingency plan in place.
The spokeswoman refused to name the areas where they are experiencing delays in the deliveries in order to avoid panic buying, but said that the AIM is watching how the government will handle this.
"We're monitoring this situation closely to make sure that the supply chain is not affected," she stressed.
Motorists in the United Kingdom started panic buying on 23 September after several national energy companies announced they were experiencing problems with fuel supplies due to a shortage of tanker drivers. The government said it would introduce over 10,000 temporary visas to truck drivers and poultry workers to solve the issue with the supply chain.
Authorities have blamed the shortage on the suspension of 40,000 trucker training tests during the COVID-19 pandemic, but the Road Haulage Association claimed that around 20,000 foreign drivers had left the country after Brexit put an end to the free movement of persons between the European Union and the UK.
4 October 2021, 09:55 GMT
On 1 October, the British Meat Processors Association confirmed to Sputnik that a shortage of butchers could impact meat supplies over Christmas.
Earlier on Monday, around 200 military personnel – half of them drivers – began delivering fuel to gas stations in London and southeast England, where the worst shortages persist.