The UK’s Ministry of Defence has decided that service personnel will now only be prescribed Lariam – an anti-malarial drug with known side effects – after a face-to-face appointment and an alternative drug will be offered. Lariam, otherwise known as Mefloquine, is has been linked to depression, hallucinations, anxiety, and suicidal thoughts.

If you or someone you know is travelling to a country that requires anti-malarial drugs, we strongly recommend you research all the options available and discuss them with your doctor.

From the BBC

Check-up for troops before anti-malarial drug Lariam, says MoD

A controversial anti-malarial drug will now only be prescribed to service personnel after a face-to-face check-up, the Ministry of Defence has said.

In response to a Defence Select Committee inquiry into the drug Lariam, officials also announced that troops will be offered an alternative.

Dozens of British troops have said they have experienced side effects including severe depression and anxiety.

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From Forces TV

Analysis: A Line Drawn Under The Lariam Saga?

The face-to-face medical assessments demanded by MPs on the Commons Defence Committee will be the rule, though with possible exceptions for very short-notice deployments.

These checks are meant to ensure that servicemen or women who may be particularly vulnerable to mental health side-effects from Lariam are not offered it.

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From Al Jazeera

Lariam: The ‘health tragedy’ and the soldiers who pay

Speaking to Al Jazeera on condition of anonymity, the now self-employed aircraft engineer bristles at the mere mention of a drug he blames for his ongoing bouts of anxiety, depression, suicidal and homicidal thoughts, all of which began shortly after his return home from West Africa.

What started as panic attacks that left him unable to travel through tunnels or on trains soon developed into a daily psychological battle that left him barely able to function. He even attempted to take his own life on three separate occasions while still in the navy.

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