Paracetamol: Supply issue
PHARMAC has been advised that the paracetamol active ingredient manufacturing plants in China have temporarily closed due to the coronavirus outbreak. This closure is impacting on the global supply of paracetamol.
We have temporarily changed the rules for dispensing funded 500 mg paracetamol tablets. Pharmacists can only dispense one month's funded supply at a time.
Information for pharmacists
Regarding Section B listed paracetamol 500 mg tab both blister and bottle packs
From 9 March until further notice:
- Stat dispensing has been removed.
- Maximum of 300 tab per prescription, which can be waived by endorsement.
- Maximum of 100 tab per dispensing, which can be waived by endorsement.
- Maximum of 300 tab on a BSO or rural PSO. This can be dispensed all at once.
- Subsidy by endorsement is available for patients with long-term conditions who require regular daily dosing for one month or greater and the prescription is annotated accordingly.
- Pharmacists may annotate the prescription as endorsed where dispensing history supports a long-term condition, up to a maximum of 720. Non-stat dispensing still applies.
- Repeats on any prescriptions dispensed before 9 March for quantities over the maximum will not be subsidised unless endorsed.
Toniq and RxOne should be updated to reflect these changes on 9 March 2020.
Who to contact
We recommend pharmacists talk to their wholesaler and suppliers about ordering stock.
Aside from a few specific vaccines, PHARMAC does not hold a supply of any medicine.
Last updated: 27 March 2020