Suicide prevention drugs short in the country

KARACHI: An alarming situation has arisen as markets in the country are short on several essential medicines, including suicide prevention drugs, due to a hike in their production costs — creating fear of an increased suicide rate in the country, media reported.

“None of the brands selling lithium carbonate are available in the market for the last couple of months,” a renowned psychiatrist and former president of the Pakistan Psychiatric Society (PPS) said while referring to the formulation known as the most effective medicine for the treatment of several psychiatric illnesses, including bipolar disorder.

Similarly, some other essential medicines, including methylphenidate for the treatment of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) in children and clonazepam drops and tablets for epilepsy in children and adults, are also not available in the market, physicians and pharmacists said.