Codeine Move Welcomed


Medsafe, which made the decision to reschedule all codeine and codeine-containing medicines last year, has confirmed that all codeine and codeine-containing medicines will become prescription only from 5 November 2020, a decision that has been welcomed by the aged care sector.

AFT Pharmaceuticals managing director Dr Hartley Atkinson said: “We are pleased Medsafe has set a firm date for the rescheduling of codeine. We expect the move, which is aimed at reducing codeine overdoses and poisonings, will increase demand for alternative pain relief treatments including, AFT’s patented paracetamol and ibuprofen combination treatment Maxigesic.”

“In the 12 months after Australia rescheduled codeine-containing medicines in 2018, sales of Maxigesic tablets increased by more than 50 percent. While it is unclear whether the New Zealand market will respond in a similar way, we expect the move to assist the growth of Maxigesic in New Zealand in the current financial year.”