Permanent coronary drug-eluting stents

Pharmac has moved to a market share arrangement for permanent coronary drug-eluting stents – an implantable medical device that is used by interventional cardiologists in DHB hospitals.

The new arrangement means Abbott is the major supplier of permanent coronary drug-eluting stents to DHB hospitals.

At least 65% of the permanent coronary drug-eluting stents purchased by DHBs will be:

  • Xience Alpine – Abbott Laboratories New Zealand Limited
  • Xience Xpedition range – Abbott Laboratories New Zealand Limited.

Abbott drug-eluting stents are known and widely used in New Zealand. PHARMAC received detailed clinical advice about this decision.

What does this mean for DHB hospitals?

From 1 August 2019 until 30 June 2022:

  • Abbott is the major supplier and has Hospital Supply Status (HSS).
  • At least 65% of the drug-eluting stents used in DHB hospitals must be purchased from Abbott.
  • The remaining 35% can be bought from other suppliers of permanent coronary drug-eluting stents (this is the discretionary variance (DV) limit).

What does this mean for patients?

There will be no change for patients who already have a permanent coronary drug-eluting stent. Suitable treatment options will continue to be available for patients nationwide. The 35% discretionary variance limit will allow DHBs to continue to treat patients with another permanent coronary drug-eluting stent when necessary.

List of contracted products


PHARMAC invited proposals for the supply of permanent coronary drug-eluting stents (DES) to DHB hospitals in New Zealand under a market share procurement model. Market share agreements guarantee suppliers a specified portion of DHB purchasing, in return for quality products at competitive prices. 

After PHARMAC evaluated the proposals, we then consulted on a proposal to award Hospital Supply Status to Abbott Laboratories NZ Limited (Abbott).

PHARMAC has proactively engaged with DHB clinical staff, DHB management and executives, and suppliers on this decision.

Key documents related to this can be found here:

Clinical advice

PHARMAC takes advice from clinical experts in all our major decisions. The Interventional Cardiology Advisory Group (ICAG) is made up of clinicians who were nominated by the Cardiac Society of Australia and New Zealand and other key stakeholders. The Group gave PHARMAC objective clinical advice to assist in this decision.

Ongoing market share arrangement

Pharmac has released a further RFP for the supply of permanent coronary drug-eluting stents under a 65% market share arrangement. Any agreement resulting from this process would not come into effect until on or after 1 July 2022 when the HSS with Abbott has ended.

RFP - supply of permanent coronary drug-eluting stents (March 2022)

Staying in touch

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