A new study has found that Britain boasts of the second largest prescription levels for statins, drugs to protect against strokes and heart attacks, in the western world.
The study was conducted by researchers at Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) who surveyed around 23 industrialized nations with Britain emerging as the country which had the highest number of prescriptions for the drugs.
Around eight million people are currently being prescribed some form of anti-cholesterol drugs while some cardiologists have suggested that the drugs should be made compulsory for all patients from the age of 50. However experts have questioned the widespread use of such drugs.
"The question is whether we are effectively targeting the statins accurately. I would like to see a rather more rigorous approach - rather than them being offered to the 'worried well' and giving them to people because they are 50, or 55, without a proper risk assessment", Prof Sir Roger Boyle, Government heart tsar from 2000 to 2011, said.