NHS spends millions per year on sleeping pills

Stat of the day: £50m. The NHS Business Services Authority has revealed that it spends £50m per year on sleeping pills for insomniacs.

by Michael Northcott
Last Updated: 09 Oct 2013

The authority released figures showing that the spend on sleeping pills has risen 17% in just four years, suggesting the average person is finding it harder to sleep. Business director for the NHS pharmacy chain, Mandeep Mudhar, says the recession and decreasing job security will be playing a part in the increase. 

The spend equates to 15.2 million sleeping-related prescriptions – that’s about one in three adults in the UK being prescribed medication just to get some shut-eye at the end of a long day. The actual number of prescriptions has risen steadily, but as with most medical treatments, the cost of the drugs is also increasing, meaning sleeping-pill spend increases faster than the number of people taking the medication. Yawn.

Oh, sorry, we fell asleep there…

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