Dulaglutide (Trulicity): Supply issue

Supply issue Active

Eli Lilly has advised of a global supply issue affecting dulaglutide (Trulicity) (Pharmacode: 2617722).

7 March Update

More advice about liraglutide added.


Global increase in demand

Globally, there’s been a significant increase in demand for GLP-1 agonists placing pressure on supplies of dulaglutide (Trulicity).

We have been advised that stock volumes in New Zealand are sufficient to meet current demand. However, there is still uncertainty around the ability to meet ongoing demand increases. 

Eli Lilly’s statement about the shortage(external link)

About liraglutide

Pharmac made the decision to fund liraglutide (brand name Victoza | Pharmacode 2653990) as an alternative GLP-1 agonist from 1 March 2023.

The medicine should be available for pharmacies to order from mid-March 2023.

Ensuring supply of GLP-1 agonists

While dulaglutide stock-levels remain secure at this stage, there is ongoing uncertainty regarding supply for this product due to a global increase in demand for GLP-1 agonists.

The listing of liraglutide will help to ensure that funded GLP-1 agonists will remain available for existing and new people who need them.

Future of funding for liraglutide

Once the dulaglutide supply issue has resolved, people who are using liraglutide will continue to be able to receive funded liraglutide.

Prescribing liraglutide

It’s up to prescribers to consider the clinical circumstances of their patients and decide which of the two funded GLP-1 agonists would be most suitable for them. The Special authority criteria is the same for both agents, and there are no funding restrictions stopping existing Trulicity patients from moving to Victoza.

Initiating treatment - He Ako Hiringa(external link)

Initiating treatment: Algorithms, notes and talking points [PDF] - He Ako Hiringa(external link)

Alternative products

Dulaglutide (Trulicity) is a GLP-1 agonist used to treat type 2 diabetes. It also has beneficial cardiovascular effects in people with type 2 diabetes.

Liraglutide is also a GLP-1 agonist

Liraglutide will be funded from 1 March 2023.

Liraglutide (Victoza) datasheet - Medsafe [PDF](external link) 

Empagliflozin (with or without metformin) is an alternative that both:

  • lowers blood glucose
  • has beneficial cardiovascular effects in people with type 2 diabetes.

Empagliflozin monograph in the NZ Formulary(external link)

Empagliflozin with metformin monograph in the NZ Formulary(external link)

Health Navigator has guidance to support people to take empagliflozin safely(external link)

Other funded alternatives that lower blood glucose includes:

vildagliptin(external link)

metformin(external link)

insulin(external link)

sulphonylureas(external link)

There are no supply issues affecting these medicines.

Supply situation

We continue to work with Eli Lilly on stock availability of dulaglutide. We have been advised that stock volumes in New Zealand are sufficient to meet demand at this stage. We understand that there have been supply issues at the local level. These are largely caused by the effects of Cyclone Gabrielle. Eli Lilly are working to address them.

Together we are monitoring stock levels and demand.

In addition, Pharmac has secured supply of liraglutide, an alternative GLP-1 agonist, which will be available from mid-March 2023. This will provide greater certainty of supply throughout this period. 

People who take dulaglutide

Pharmac and Eli Lilly are working hard to make sure you can continue to access this important medicine. Please continue to access this medicine normally.

We appreciate it is frustrating when there are supply issues with medicines. 

Who to contact

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

If you have questions about how to treat type 2 diabetes, talk to your health professional.