Suspected side effect from a medicine - how to report

The Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) “Yellow Card Scheme” is the UK system for collecting and monitoring information on suspected safety concerns or incidents involving side effects from medicines (also known as adverse drug reactions or ADRs) and medical devices. 
Yellow Card - making medicines safer

The Yellow Card Scheme is run by the MHRA and relies on voluntary reporting of suspected ADRs by health professionals and patients or their families. The purpose is to provide an early warning that the safety of a product or medical device may require further investigation.

  • Reporting from members of the public can help the MHRA identify any new side effects or risks associated with medicines.
  • The Yellow Card scheme also welcomes reports of side-effects from alternative medicines (herbal remedies and homeopathy treatments), vaccines, and medical devices, as well as defective or falsified (fake) products and e-cigarettes.

The joint RCPCH and Neonatal and Paediatric Pharmacists Group (NPPG) Medicines Committee advises accordance to the best practice guidance set out within the Yellow Card Scheme.

    People are encouraged to report adverse reactions or side effects if:

    • They suspect that the side effect or adverse reaction was caused by a medicine they were taking (this includes prescribed or over-the-counter medicines, or herbal or other alternative medicines), a vaccine or medical device
    • The side effect occurs when they are taking more than one medicine or herbal medicine