Defence chiefs hit out over anti-malaria drug usage by the MoD

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MPS fighting for the military to axe the use of a ‘dangerous’ anti-malarial drug have hit out at the Ministry of Defence’s response to their fears.

A report into the controversial use of the drug Lariam has today been published by the House of Commons Defence Committee.

The drug resulted in a number of damaging side-effects for scores of service personnel prescribed it.

Today the MoD launched a ‘single point of contact’ service in response to the concerns to help current and former armed forces members who are worried about their use Lariam.

The move has been welcomed by the committee.

But a spokesman said calls for the MoD to only use Lariam as a ‘drug of last resort’ had been snubbed.

He said: ‘This would have sent out a clear message that the MoD has acknowledged and accepted the high risks associated with the use of Lariam.’

Defence minister Mark Lancaster said: ‘As with all malaria preventatives, Lariam can have side effects; and whilst it is only used in a small number of cases, it can be the most effective way to stop our troops getting this deadly disease.’

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