Drug shortages are getting "dramatically worse" and require rapid intervention.
That's according to Sheena Mitchell, pharmacist and host of the WonderCare podcast.
She was speaking as industry experts have said a serious shortage of medicines, including a life-saving breast cancer drug, is the 'highest it has ever been'.
Ms Mitchell told Newstalk Breakfast the current list of shortages is likely already out-of-date.
"Things on the ground at pharmacy level are quite severe," she said.
"We're finding that the HPRA list, which is the official list of shortages in Ireland, isn't reflecting the reality in community pharmacy.
"There's potentially at the moment 261 medicines short, according to the HPRA, [but] those figures are determined by whether or not the manufacturer has notified the HPRA of a shortage.
"In many cases there seems to be delays with that happening, which results in community pharmacies experiencing shortages of a much larger extent".
'Global medicines market'
Ms Mitchell said the Government needs to do more to help.
"We're really irrelevant in the landscape of the global medicines market," she said.
"We're a tiny population on the periphery of Europe, so we need to be more proactive.
"Here's where I feel the Government are kind of driving with a blindfold on, because there is no Chief Pharmaceutical Officer in the Department of Health.
"There is no one what knows what it's like for the patient, at a patient level, to not be able to access their medicines".
Ms Mitchell said the issue is no longer confined to the winter time.
"Commonly at this time of the year, drug shortages would have allayed a little bit - but this is not a winter problem anymore," she said.
"Last year, I think the medicines on allocation at this time of year were around 60, whereas now we're talking over 330.
"This problem is getting dramatically worse and very quickly, and I think we need rapid intervention," she added.