Salbutamol (Asthalin) nebuliser 1 mg and 2 mg per ml: Supply issue

Supply issue Active

A manufacturing delay has impacted the supply of Asthalin salbutamol 1 mg / ml and 2 mg / ml nebuliser solution (Pharmacodes 2154315 & 2154323).

22 February 2024 update

2 mg / ml presentation: A limited supply of the section 29 alternative is available in the supply chain. Stock remains constrained. Resupply of the registered product is now expected early April.  

1 mg / ml presentation: There is no stock available. We listed an alternative brand from 1 March 2024. Stock is due to arrive in Aotearoa in late February / early March 2024 (it will take time to clear quality assurance and enter the supply chain).

We continue working with the supplier to import alternatives. We apologise for the inconvenience supply issues can cause.

Affected products

Rex Medical, the supplier, advised that due to manufacturing delays, it is out of stock of both funded strengths of Asthalin. We have listed alternatives.

2 mg per ml, 2.5 ml ampoule

Affected product

  • Chemical: Salbutamol
  • Brand: Asthalin
  • Presentation: Nebuliser soln, 2 mg per ml, 2.5 ml ampoule - Up to 30 neb available on a PSO
  • Pharmacode: 2154323

Listed alternative from 1 February 2024

Note the alternative brand is a 30 pack (where the contracted brand is a 20 pack), please update your order quantities accordingly. Limited stock is available. We continue to work with the supplier on alternatives.

  • Brand: Cipla (Section 29)
  • Pharmacode: 2672529 
  • Subsidy: $14.15
  • Measure / Qty: per 30

1 mg per ml, 2.5 ml ampoule

Affected product

  • Chemical: Salbutamol
  • Brand: Asthalin
  • Presentation: Nebuliser soln, 1 mg per ml, 2.5 ml ampoule - Up to 30 neb available on a PSO
  • Pharmacode: 2154315

Listed alternatives from 1 March 2024

Stock is expected to arrive in Aotearoa New Zealand by late February. It can take a couple of weeks to clear quality assurance and make its way through the supply chain to pharmacies.

  • Brand: Teva-Salbutamol Sterinebs
  • Presentation: Nebuliser soln, 1 mg per ml, 2.5 ml ampoule
  • Pharmacode: 2674319 
  • Pack size: 20 ampoules
  • Subsidy: $8.96 per pack
  • Section 29 rules apply and wastage claimable

Listed alternatives from 1 September 2023

As at 22 February 2024, there is no stock available of either alternative.

  • Brand: Ventolin Nebules
  • Presentation: Nebuliser soln, 1 mg per ml, 2.5 ml ampoule
  • Pharmacode: 2663775
  • Pack size: 20 ampoules
  • Subsidy: $8.96 per pack
  • Section 29 rules apply
  • Brand: Accord
  • Presentation: Nebuliser soln, 1 mg per ml, 2.5 ml ampoule
  • Pharmacode: 2663686
  • Pack size: 20 ampoules
  • Subsidy: $51.11 per pack
  • Section 29 rules apply

Schedule listings for Asthalin(external link)

This issue also affects salbutamol with ipratropium nebuliser solution 2.5 mg (Duolin)

Prescribing and supplying an unapproved medicine

Section 29 of the Medicines Act 1981 allows for medicines that are not Medsafe approved to be prescribed and supplied to people. The medicine must be prescribed by someone registered with the Medical Council of New Zealand – such as, a doctor. 

We know supplying a medicine under section 29 is not ideal. In this case, however, this will allow patients to be able to access an appropriate treatment. 

We apologise for any inconvenience this causes. 

Advice for prescribing under section 29 – BPAC website(external link) 

Prescriber and pharmacist requirements for section 29 medicines – Medsafe website (external link)

Medsafe’s section 29 Declaration / Notification Form [DOC](external link)

What patients need to know about unapproved medicines – Healthify website(external link)

Expected resupply

The supplier expects normal supply to resume:

  • 1 mg / ml - late March 2024.
  • 2 mg / ml - early April 2024

Who to contact

If you have questions about this issue, email enquiry@pharmac.govt.nz

Please include as much information as you can about the product (presentation, brand, pharmacode) and who your wholesaler is.  

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