An Ipswich man fears the health of others maybe at risk as he battles to get hold of vital medication he needs to treat a long-term condition.

Chu Man lives with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) but has not been able to find the medicine he needs despite trying to get it at more than 20 pharmacies in Ipswich.

He has not been able to get hold of his prescribed medication since April 24 even travelling as far afield as Romford but without success.

"My November prescription was fulfilled by my usual pharmacy with no issues, December took two attempts, albeit short of the full prescription," said Mr Man, who was elected as a Labour councillor to represent Stoke Park on Ipswich Borough Council at the local elections on May 2.

He had no problems getting hold of his medication between January and March this year but now he is unable to get it at all.

East Anglian Daily Times: Cllr Man said this is the first time he has faced this shortageCllr Man said this is the first time he has faced this shortage (Image: Ipswich Labour)

He said: "The greater concern is for the children (and their parents) who rely on their medication to function, who do not have the lived experience of creating their own 'workarounds'.

"After fighting to get a diagnosis, which can take years, we go through a period of titration, to determine the best dose and version of the medication, as the efficacy and side effects vary from person to person."

Medication for ADHD has been in short supply across England since September 2023 and at the time it was thought it would only be temporary.

However, supplies have come under increased pressure due to rising global demand for ADHD medicines. There is also a national shortage of medicines for diabetes and hormone replacement therapy. 

Diabetes patient Nigel Davies, of Ipswich, has also been facing difficulty getting hold of the medication he needs to control his condition.

He has called on health chiefs in Suffolk to take urgent action to help him and others unable to get the medication they need.

Health chiefs at Suffolk County Council wants Suffolk and North East Essex (SNEE) integrated care board to set up a task group to improve communication between patients, hospitals, GPs and pharmacies.


East Anglian Daily Times: The councillor said his main concern is for children and thier familiesThe councillor said his main concern is for children and thier families

While some patients have been offered alternative medicines for their ADHD, Mr Man says it is not an option for some people as medication affects each person differently.

He says he can manage for a day or two without his medication but other members of his support group are voicing increasing concerns over the uncertainty of supplies.

Jack Abbott, Labour's prospective parliamentary candidate for Ipswich, says the current situation is a crisis. 

"This is a dangerous situation which could put patients’ health at risk."