Lamotrigine: Information for health care professionals
In this section:
- Supporting your patient
- Reimbursement of waived GP co-payment fees
- Reporting a problem with medication
- Funding for Lamictal and Arrow-Lamotrigine in exceptional circumstances
- On-going availability of other brands
- Who to contact
We value the work you do supporting patients through brand changes to medicines and making the transition smooth for them.
If you want to learn more about brand changes go to the CME-accredited training module called 'Beyond the Brand'.
We would especially like to support you as you help patients through this brand change of lamotrigine.
Key points to tell your patients about Logem
- Logem has the same active ingredient as the other brands of lamotrigine and is delivered to your body the same way.
- Logem should work the same way for you as your old brand of lamotrigine.
- Logem has been approved by Medsafe, the New Zealand Medicines Authority who decides what medicines are safe to use.
Bpacnz has published an article which includes practical advice on supporting the lamotrigine brand change and includes background on the evidence behind the decision to change brands.
Some people may return to their GP with concerns regarding the brand change to Logem. In these cases, the GP visit co-payment may be waived and PHARMAC will reimburse the GP clinic on invoices received before 31 January 2020.
In all cases:
- The patient GP co-payment must have been waived.
- Only one claim per patient can be made.
- A proforma invoice and patient detail form must be submitted to PHARMAC by 31 January 2020.
- You can make multiple claims on one form and submit forms on a monthly basis.
- Patient NHI numbers must be provided for audit and verification purposes.
We encourage you to report any adverse reaction your patient experiences to CARM. You may also be able to submit a report through their patient management software.
Some people may have difficulty changing brands due to medical reasons or other concerns. For people who need it, we can continue to fund the same brand of medication. Prescribers need to apply via our exceptional circumstances process.
Application for funding for alternative brands of lamotrigine
PHARMAC will consider a funding application made by a prescriber for the Lamictal or Arrow-Lamotrigine brands of lamotrigine. We’ll consider funding these brands for people who:
- have been on lamotrigine prior to 1 October, and
- may have difficulty managing a change of brand to Logem for medical reasons or other concerns, or
- have tried to change and have not tolerated it.
Duration of funding for the requested lamotrigine brand will, if granted, be determined by PHARMAC on a case-by-case basis. This may mean that you will need to submit a renewal application for ongoing funding. This would need to indicate why a change to Logem would not be clinically appropriate. All approvals will indicate the duration of funding.
- Complete an exceptional circumstances application form for funding an alternative brand of lamotrigine. Complete a separate form for each patient.
- Submit the application through PHARMAC's portal.
- Applications will be accepted up to 24 December 2019.
- We recommend that applications are submitted before 20 December for decisions to be made before Christmas.
- PHARMAC offices will be closed from 25 December 2019 reopening on 3 January 2020.
- Emergency applications can be made during the close down period. Staff are on-call to process these (please state clearly if an application is urgent).
- You will receive a confirmation email that we have received the application and we may ask you some further questions to clarify your patient’s situation.
- We will contact you as soon as possible to let you know the outcome of the application. You will need to let your patient know the outcome of any application.
- You can call 0800 66 00 50 or email NPPA@pharmac.govt.nz if you have any questions about the process.
Types of applications for alternative brand funding
Applications for funding will be considered from prescribers for individuals that:
- have not tolerated the change
- have had breakthrough seizures
- have had mood destabilisation
- the prescriber has clinical concerns about the individual’s ability to manage the change (e.g. previous issues with medication changes, severe anxiety around this brand change)
- have concerns about their ability to drive.
PHARMAC has no contractual arrangements for supply of other brands of lamotrigine. However:
- GlaxoSmithKline advises that they will continue to make Lamictal brand of lamotrigine available in New Zealand
- Teva will continue to supply all strengths of Arrow-Lamotrigine in New Zealand if there is on-going market demand.
Please note: We don't have have any contractual agreements, as such we can't guarantee:
- an on-going supply of your specific lamotrigine brand
- what the price will be for that brand.
If you have any questions:
- email: email@example.com
- phone: 0800 66 00 50
Last updated: 12 December 2019