Process for notification of product changes
Pharmacists rely on the information provided by the Pharmacy Guild’s Premiums Guide, and PHARMAC’s Pharmaceutical Schedule and Schedule Update. This is why information for these publications must be accurate and received within the given timeframes.
- For new listings on the Pharmaceutical Schedule, the supplier must notify PHARMAC, the Pharmacy Guild and the market by 4.30 pm on the 12th of the month prior to listing. When notifying, the supplier must have stock available for supply.
- Once a supplier decides to change the price or other details of a subsidised pharmaceutical product, the supplier must notify the marketplace, the Pharmacy Guild and PHARMAC by 4.30 pm on the 12th of the month prior to the change. After this deadline, all stock sold by the supplier must reflect the changed price of the product.
- The Guild and PHARMAC, will then make these changes in their databases. The Guild and PHARMAC communicate and verify subsidy information. Then the Guild recalculates the differential between the manufacturer’s price and the Pharmaceutical Schedule subsidy. (This is termed the premium.)
- The Guild will notify the supplier regarding the premiums pertaining to their individual products.
- The Guild will make changes in its monthly publication – the Premiums Guide, which provides a list of the differentials between current manufacturers’ prices and Pharmaceutical Schedule subsidy. This requires time to typeset, print and distribute to pharmacists and other subscribers.
- Changes to the pharmaceutical product’s premium will also be forwarded to the software vendors for inclusion in the computer dispensary programme. This enables current premiums to be available on the pharmacist’s computer, for reimbursement claiming purposes and price calculations.
- If the deadline is not respected, the pharmacist could be unaware of the new premium, and therefore be financially disadvantaged in the event of a price increase, or patients could be disadvantaged in the case of a price decrease.
- Upon receipt of the changes, PHARMAC will notify the appropriate Therapeutic Group Managers and review the changes with the current Pharmaceutical Schedule.
- PHARMAC will confirm these details with the supplier, Pharmacy Guild, and Ministry of Health Sector Services – the government’s organisation that processes the subsidy payments to pharmacists.
- Once the changes are processed, the Schedule’s Monthly Update is produced and then distributed for use by the first of the month. PHARMAC makes every endeavour to distribute by about the 23rd of the month to give pharmacies time to adjust stock and pricing.
Price increases do not automatically trigger a review of the product’s subsidy. To make an official request to reexamine the subsidy, please send a letter stating the request and provide any evidence on sales and expected cost to DHBs. Please allow six weeks for consideration as this will involve formal approval by the PHARMAC Board. For further information you may consult the Operating Policy and Procedure manual of the Pharmaceutical Management Agency.
How to use the Notification of product changes form
- Use one form per pharmaceutical product, regardless of the number of changes made to that one product.
- Please complete all lines that are applicable, using clearly legible handwriting.
- Tick those boxes that are applicable to the changes you are making.
- Fax this form to both PHARMAC and the Pharmacy Guild as soon as possible, but no later than 4.30 pm on the 12th of the month (or 4.30 pm on the last working day preceding the 12th when the 12th falls on a weekend or public holiday), in order for these changes to be reflected in the following month’s publication.
- Keep the original form for your files. If mailing the notification instead of faxing, please make copies of your completed form and send to both PHARMAC and the Pharmacy Guild.
The Pharmacy Guild of New Zealand Inc
PO Box 27 139
Phone (04) 802 8200
Fax (04) 384 8085
PO Box 10 254
Phone (04) 460 4990
Fax (04) 460 4995
Last updated: 29 March 2016