From 1 July 2014, PHARMAC is making some changes to the funded brands of quetiapine tablets.
What is changing?
There are currently three funded brands of this medication available.
- Dr Reddy’s Quetiapine
If you take either Dr Reddy’s Quetiapine or the Seroquel brand you will need to change to the Quetapel brand.
When will the change happen
- From 1 September 2014 a part payment may be required for the quetiapine brand you are taking unless you are already taking Quetapel. To avoid this part payment, you will need to take the fully funded Quetapel brand.
- From 1 December 2014, only the Quetapel brand will be funded.
Will the medicine work in the same way?
Your medicine itself is not changing, only the brand. The funded brand of quetiapine contains the same amount of the active ingredient, quetiapine. This means that the effect of the medicine Quetapel should be the same as the brand you are currently taking.
You shouldn’t notice any difference in how you feel after taking Quetapel. If you do notice any major changes or side effects, please talk with your doctor about it.
Will there be any additional costs for me to pay after 1 December?
Other than the usual patient co-payment, there will be no extra cost for you to pay if you take the funded brand (Quetapel).
Will the tablets or pack look different?
Quetapel is made by a different supplier and will look different, but will still have the same active medicine and will work in the same way. The Quetapel tablet packs and blister packs are illustrated below.
Why has this change happened?
Recently a decision was made to fund only one brand of quetiapine tablets. This means from 1 December only the Quetapel brand of quetiapine tablets will be fully funded. Significant savings are associated with the move to one fully-funded brand of quetiapine tablets. This means that more money can be freed up to fund other medicines to treat other people in our communities. Rest assured, Quetapel has been approved by Medsafe.
Where can I get more information?
If you would like more information about the change please contact the PHARMAC helpline, 0800 66 00 50 (between 9 am and 5 pm weekdays). You can also e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org with your queries or comments.
Your doctor, nurse or pharmacist will also help guide you during the changeover period.
Last updated: 4 July 2016