26 July 2021: OIA response | Number of females dispensed anti-seizure medicines in 2020

26 July 2021

Dear [name and contact details withheld] 

Request for information 

Thank you for your request dated 29 June 2021 under the Official Information Act 1982 (OIA) for information relating to anti-seizure medicines for people of childbearing potential. You requested: 

How many people of childbearing potential (PHARMAC may have it categorised as females) were on the following anti-seizure medicines, during 2020.  Please break down each medicine into 5 year age bands, and ethnicity.

  • Clonazepam
  • Phenobarbitone
  • Sodium valproate
  • Vigabatrin
  • Acetazolamide
  • Carbamazepine
  • Topiramate
  • Oxcarbazepine
  • Lacosamide
  • Ethosuximide
  • Primidone
  • Gabapentin
  • Lamotrigine
  • Lorazepam
  • Diazepam
  • Phenytoin
  • Clobazam
  • Levetiracetam
  • Pregabalin
  • Medicinal cannabis 

Please find data for your request, along with associated data notes, attached with this response letter. 

Where 10 or fewer people were dispensed a medicine, we have changed the number shown to "≤10" as we believe this is necessary to protect the privacy of these people (section 9(2)(a) of the OIA). 

As required under the OIA, we also considered whether, in the circumstances, the withholding of this information was outweighed by other considerations which render it desirable, in the public interest, to make this information available. In this case we did not consider that the public interest outweighed the reasons for withholding the information. 

Please note you have the right, by way of complaint under section 28(3) of the OIA to an Ombudsman, to seek an investigation and review of our decision.

We trust that this information answers your queries. We are making our information more freely available, so we now publish selected OIA responses (excluding personal details) on our website. Please get in touch with us if you have any questions about this. 

Yours sincerely 

Rachel Read
Manager, Policy and Government Services