Codeine upscheduling

The Pharmacy Guild of Australia and the Pharmaceutical Society of Australia have collaborated to develop a range of materials and training resources to support community pharmacy in the transition to the upscheduling of codeine on 1 February 2018.  

In November 2017, community pharmacies across Australia were sent a package of materials which were designed to support pharmacists and their patients around the changes. The materials sent out to pharmacies included:

  1. A fact sheet on what a pharmacist needs to know about changes to medicines containing codeine.
  2. A pharmacy checklist to prepare for the February 2018 upscheduling.
  3. A consumer flyer for pharmacists to encourage consumers to talk to their pharmacists about the changes.
  4. A counter card to encourage consumers to talk to their pharmacists about pain management.
  5. Self Care Fact Cards for pharmacists to use with patients.
  6. A flow chart to help pharmacists and pharmacy staff provide advice and referrals to patients.
  7. Template letters of referral and seeking assistance communicating the changes to patients for pharmacists to send to their local health professionals.

There are some materials still available if your pharmacy is interested in receiving additional copies.  Please contact communications@guild.org.au

The Guild and PSA also worked together to develop specialised online training modules and tools for pharmacists and pharmacy staff to ensure the transition is as smooth as possible. All the training modules are now available for all pharmacists to access via Guild Learning & Development and the PSA's websites.

Funding for this project was provided by the Australian Government.

TGA - Codeine Information Hub

The Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) has published a list of products that have gone through the upscheduling process.  The list includes those previously available over-the-counter (Schedule 2, Schedule 3) codeine-containing products that have been upscheduled to prescription medicine (Schedule 4) via application to the TGA.  You should contact the sponsor to confirm their intention to continue marketing their goods in Australia after 1 February 2018.

The TGA advises that products containing other codeine derivatives, such as pholcodine, dextromethorphan and dihydrocodeine are unaffected by the decision to upschedule codeine.

Further information is available through the TGA's codeine information hub.

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Page last updated 01 February 2018