Guidance

Mefloquine information signposting service for former and serving personnel

Published 30 August 2016

If you are or someone you know is in immediate distress or in crisis please contact the emergency services on 999.

The Mefloquine Single Point of Contact is for current and former service personnel who have concerns about their experience of Mefloquine (commercially known as Lariam) which launches 5 September 2016.

The MOD takes the health and well being of its personnel seriously and acknowledges its duty of care to provide the best possible support to them. This service provides information and signposting to a range of services to address their concerns.

Calls to the line are confidential and no personal details are retained. Lines are open between 9am to 5pm, Monday to Friday (except bank holidays).

Telephone: 0306 7705 059

Email: SGDPHC-MEFLOQUINESPOC@mod.uk

What should I do if I have concerns about my experience of Mefloquine?

If you are a serving member of the armed forces and have concerns about your experience of Mefloquine and have not already sought treatment, you are advised to contact your senior medical officer for health advice.

If you are a veteran or reservist and have concerns about your experience of Mefloquine and have not already sought treatment, you are advised to contact your local NHS GP for health advice. If you have not registered with a NHS GP already you are advised to do so as soon as possible.

In addition the Veterans and Reservists Mental Health Programme provides assessment and treatment advice for veterans (who have deployed since 1982) and reservists who have been deployed overseas since 1 January 2003, and believe that their deployment may have affected their mental health.

How do I find out if I have taken Mefloquine?

If you are a serving member of the armed forces you are advised to contact your senior medical officer who can review your medical records with you and advise if Mefloquine has been previously prescribed.

If you are a veteran or reservist you are advised to contact your local NHS GP who may have already obtained a copy of your military medical records and will advise if Mefloquine has been previously prescribed. If your NHS GP has not yet accessed your military medical records they can do so by following the process below.

Alternatively you can submit a Subject Access Request (SAR) to gain access to your personal data held by the Ministry of Defence.

I am a NHS GP, how do I access the military medical records of my patient?

An FMED 133 (a Medical History on Release from HM Forces document) is a summary of the individual’s service medical history, and includes details of disabilities, immunisations, clinical conditions and of any significant treatments received. The patient has been given a printout of their most recent primary care electronic medical record, which they may choose to give to you.

If access to copies of the full medical record is required please write to the appropriate address below, enclosing consent from the patient. Consent would usually be a completed part 2 of the FMED 133 supplied to the patient.

Royal Navy / Royal Marines

RN Service Leavers
Institute of Naval Medicine
Crescent Road
Alverstoke
Gosport
Hants PO12 2DL

British Army

Secretariat Disclosure 3 (Medical)
Mail Point 525
Army Personnel Centre
Kentigern House
65 Brown Street
Glasgow G2 8EX

Royal Air Force

ACOS Manning (Medical Casework)
Room 1, Building 22
Air Command
RAF High Wycombe
Buckinghamshire
HP14 4UE

Am I entitled to compensation?

There are a number of compensation schemes administered by Veterans UK on behalf of MOD available to serving and former serving personnel who are injured as a result of their service in the armed forces. The scheme that applies to each individual will depend on when and where you served. Further information about the Armed Forces Compensation Scheme and the War Pensions Scheme can be found here.

What is Mefloquine?

Mefloquine (trade name Lariam) is one of a number of effective anti-malarial drugs used in many parts of the world. The drug is licensed by the Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) based on the expert guidance of the Public Health England Advisory Committee on Malaria Prevention. Mefloquine is also recommended as an effective anti-malarial by international health agencies, including the World Health Organisation. For more information the patient information leaflet can be viewed here.

What happens if a member of the UK armed forces has an adverse reaction to Mefloquine?

Adverse reactions to any drug are required to be reported by medical officers to the MHRA in line with standard UK medical practice. All treatments and medications have the potential to cause side effects and adverse reactions in a small number of people. Anybody from the UK, including members of the public, can report any suspected side effects from anti-malarials via the Yellow Card scheme on the MHRA website www.mhra.gov.uk.

What is the Yellow Card Scheme? Who runs it?

The Yellow Card scheme is operated by the MHRA and is the system for recording adverse incidents, including side effects, with medicines and medical devices in the UK.

The MHRA collates and reviews reports of suspected adverse drug reactions on all licensed and unlicensed medicines and vaccines; it includes those issued on prescription and those bought over the counter. Yellow Cards are used alongside other scientific safety information to help the MHRA make changes, if necessary, to the warnings given to people taking a medicine or vaccine, or to the way they are used, to minimise potential risks.