Bromocriptine: Access change and discontinuation

Discontinuation Access change Supply issue Active

We are likely to discontinue bromocriptine in 2022. In the meantime, we've limited access to existing patients and have listed an unapproved brand of bromocriptine.

Why are we doing this?

Apotex currently supplies bromocriptine mesylate 2.5 mg tablets. Apotex is leaving the New Zealand market. We have been looking for new suppliers for all the medicines they currently supply.

Read more about Apotex

Our efforts to source an alternative long-term supplier of bromocriptine have been unsuccessful. It is likely that we will discontinue bromocriptine in early 2022.

Current supply of bromocriptine

No new patients for bromocriptine

We want to ensure supply of bromocriptine for existing patients for as long as possible. To do this, we added an endorsement to bromocriptine. Only people who were using bromocriptine before 1 March 2021 can access funding.

Pharmacists can endorse the script where they have a record of a previous dispensing of bromocriptine.

We acknowledge the inconvenience this may cause to patients, pharmacists and prescribers.

Short-term supply of unapproved bromocriptine  

We are aware that bromocriptine is used for some people during pregnancy. We have sourced a short-term supply of bromocriptine to ensure people don't need to change treatment while they are pregnant. The new brand is Parlodel to be supplied by Novartis. It will be funded from 1 July 2021.

This product is not Medsafe-approved so would need to be prescribed and supplied to patients under section 29 of the Medicines Act. We expect that supply of this stock would last until January 2022.

About section 29 medicines for prescribers and pharmacists – Medsafe website(external link)

About section 29 medicines for consumers – Health Navigator website(external link)

Alternatives to bromocriptine

We have received clinical advice that cabergoline is a suitable funded alternative for people receiving bromocriptine for endocrine conditions. We are working to amend the Special Authority to widen access to cabergoline.

Other dopamine agonists for Parkinson’s disease are fully funded without restriction.

If you know of any other suitable alternatives, contact us at enquiry@pharmac.govt.nz

Check the Schedule for funded dopamine agonists(external link)

About cabergoline – NZ Formulary(external link)

Who to contact

If you take bromocriptine, you're best to talk to your pharmacist, doctor or the person who prescribed your bromocriptine. Pharmac cannot comment on your individual clinical circumstances.

If you have a question about funding for bromocriptine or alternative agents, email enquiry@pharmac.govt.nz