GPs 'should monitor patients addicted to prescription drugs'

GPs should start collecting anonymous data on patients they suspect or know to be hooked on prescription drugs, according to MPs on the home affairs select committee. They say 1.5 million people are addicted.

View all 3 updates ›

1.5 million patients 'are addicted to prescription drugs'

There are currently 1.5 million people addicted to prescription drugs in the UK. The abuse of these types of substances is taking place in the shadows and its extent is still unquantified.

Local GPs need to report their suspicions and collate information to illuminate this problem.

– Keith Vaz MP, Committee chair

Lack of action would lead to "catastrophic consequences", Mr Vaz said.

The committee cited work by the All Party Parliamentary Group for Involuntary Tranquilliser Addiction which estimates that 1.5 million people are addicted to these type of drugs, far higher than those who are in treatment for addiction to illegal drugs.

More top news