COVID-19: PAH treatments – Bosentan and sildenafil
Bosentan and sildenafil are medicines that open up blood vessels. In some people they're used to treat pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH). PAH is a serious condition that affects a small number of people living in New Zealand. These changes come into effect on 1 April 2020.
Page last updated: 27 March 2020
Removal of prescriber restrictions for bosentan Special Authority renewals
During the COVID-19 response, any relevant practitioner will be to apply for a Special Authority renewal for bosentan.
Change to testing requirements for sildenafil
We have changed the requirement for right heart catheterisations (including PCWP, PAPm, or PVR tests) when applying for a Special Authority.
Given the current constraints on the health sector, we consider PCWP, PAPm and PVR testing may be impossible or impractical. Clinicians will therefore not need to do PCWP, PAPm, or PVR tests if it is impossible or impractical to do so.
We anticipate changing the criteria back to its current status once health services have stabilised after the response to COVID-19.
The Special Authority form will be changed as follows:
4.2 Testing for PCWP, PAPm, or PVR cannot be performed due to the patient’s young age, or health system capacity constraints.
Ambrisentan, epoprostenol and iloprost
The changes to the Special Authority arrangements for bosentan and sildenafil do not apply to medicines currently assessed by the PAH Panel (ie ambrisentan, epoprostenol and iloprost).
The medicines assessed by the Panel will be handled via a separate approach.
Who to contact
If you have any questions about the changes to bosentan and sildenafil, email firstname.lastname@example.org
For more information about the PAH Panel medicines ambrisentan, epoprostenol and iloprost, email email@example.com.
Last updated: 15 April 2020