Decision to list preservative free Minims prednisolone sodium phosphate 0.5% eye drops

Medicines

Decision

PHARMAC is pleased to announce the approval of an agreement with Bausch & Lomb (New Zealand) Limited to list preservative free prednisolone sodium phosphate 0.5% eye drops (Minims Prednisolone) in Section B and Part II of Section H of the Pharmaceutical Schedule.

This was the subject of a consultation letter dated 23 July 2015.

In summary, the effect of the decision is that Minims Prednisolone will be fully funded on the 1 October 2015.

Details of the decision

Minims Prednisolone will be listed in Section B and in Part II of Section H, of the Pharmaceutical Schedule from 1 October 2015 at the following price and subsidies (ex-manufacturer and excluding GST):

Chemical Presentation Brand Pack size Price and subsidy
Prednisolone sodium phosphate Eye drops 0.5%, single dose (preservative free) Minims Prednisolone 20 dose $38.50
  • Minims Prednisolone will be protected from subsidy reduction or delisting until 1 October 2018.
  • Minims Prednisolone will be listed in Section B of the Pharmaceutical Schedule, subject to the following Special Authority criteria:

Special Authority for Subsidy

Initial application from ophthalmologist. Approvals valid for 6 months for applications meeting the following criteria:

Both:

  1. Patient has severe inflammation; and
  2. Patient has a confirmed allergic reaction to preservative in eye drops.

Renewal from any relevant practitioner. Approvals valid for 6 months where the treatment remains appropriate and the patient is benefiting from treatment.

  • The brand name Minims Prednisolone will be added to the preservative free prednisolone sodium phosphate 0.5% eye drops listing in Part II of Section H of the Pharmaceutical Schedule at the pricing set out above. No restrictions will apply in Part II of Section H.

Feedback received

We appreciate all of the feedback that we received and acknowledge the time people took to respond. All consultation responses received by 6 August 2015 were considered in their entirety in making a decision on the proposed changes. Most responses were supportive of the proposal, and the following issues were raised in relation to specific aspects of the proposal:

Theme Comment

The listing will result in savings for a DHB hospital

This would be the case for most DHB hospitals.

Request for optometrists to be included into the named practitioners who can initiate treatment under the Special Authority.

The Special Authority is consistent with the clinical advice PHARMAC has received from PTAC and the Ophthalmology Subcommittee. 

The renewal criteria have been widened, following consideration of consultation feedback, to include ‘all relevant prescribers’. This would allow optometrists to apply for funding to continue treatment.

PHARMAC will observe uptake rates following this listing and could consider expanding the initiation Special Authority criteria to optometrists in the future.

More information

If you have any questions about this decision, you can email us at enquiry@pharmac.govt.nz.