The number of British Army personnel prescribed anti-depressants between 01 January 2015 and 08 January 2017 was:
- Male soldiers: 5,020.
- Female soldiers: 1,148.
- Total: 6,168.
- This information is derived from the Defence Medical Information Capability Programme (DMICP) which is a centralised data warehouse of coded information.
- The DMICP is a the source of electronic, integrated healthcare records for primary healthcare and some MOD specialist care providers from which searches for codes can be run.
- Some medications used to treat depression are used to treat conditions other than mental health.
- Amitriptyline, nortriptyline, and duloxetine are used much more frequently in the management of neuropathic pain than in depression.
- Furthermore, selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRI’s) such as fluoxetine, paroxetine, citalopram, escitalopram, sertraline can be used to treat other medical conditions.
- It is not possible to determine the reason for prescription from centrally held data, therefore the numbers provided will contain prescriptions for medical conditions other than depression.
FOI 2017/13417 dated 14 February 2018.