Quetiapine shortage – Information patients, families and carers for June 2024

Quetiapine shortage – Information for patients, families and carers
June 2024

There is a national shortage of some forms of Quetiapine until at least the end of August 2024. In the NHS, we are doing everything we can to support patients until this problem is resolved but unfortunately it is outside our control. Below we have set out answers to some of the questions you may have about this situation.

Which medicines are affected?
The higher strengths of immediate release Quetiapine are affected at the moment, but this may change, and different strengths and preparations may be affected over the coming weeks.

How long will the shortage last?
The shortages are currently expected to resolve at the end of August 2024, but this may change.

Is this affecting all pharmacies?
Yes – while each pharmacy may have some stock currently, this is a national shortage affecting all suppliers so all pharmacies will struggle to get further supplies for the next few months.

What if I cannot get my Quetiapine prescription?
The first step is to try other pharmacies, as another one may have it in stock. You can use the find a pharmacy page on the NHS website. Your local pharmacy may also help you to find a supply, and you can ask for your prescription to be made available to other pharmacies.

If you are still unable to get your prescription, please contact your GP for advice. Do not try to substitute other medications yourself as this may be dangerous.

Check if you may still have some unused Quetiapine supplies in the house – please check that it is the right strength and type and that they are still in-date. This may be sufficient to tide you over until supplies are available again.

Are there alternatives available?
It may be possible to switch to a different form of Quetiapine, or take different strength tablets for your dose regimen, depending on what is available. If this isn’t possible you may temporarily need to change to a different drug – your GP or mental health team will be able to advise you on this.

Once the shortage has been resolved, it is likely that you will be returned to your current treatment regimen.

Please remember…
Our doctors, nurses and pharmacists are doing everything they can to help people through a difficult situation. We know that this may be an upsetting situation, but please be patient and remember that this is a worldwide manufacturing problem and healthcare staff are doing their very best to help.

If you have further questions, please speak with your GP practice or mental health team.

Created in partnership by North East and North Cumbria Integrated Care Board, Cumbria, Northumberland, Tyne and Wear NHS Foundation Trust and Tees, Esk and Wear Valley NHS Foundation Trust. Accurate on 17 June 2024