Liraglutide (Victoza): Funded from 1 March 2023

Liraglutide (brand name Victoza | Pharmacode 2653990) is a GLP-1 agonist funded to treat type 2 diabetes from 1 March 2023.

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About this funding decision

Pharmac has funded liraglutide (brand name Victoza | Pharmacode 2653990), a GLP-1 agonist, from 1 March 2023. We funded liraglutide because there is ongoing uncertainty regarding supply of dulaglutide, caused by a global increase in demand for GLP-1 agonists. 

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

Future of funding for liraglutide

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

Liraglutide (Saxenda) for weight loss

Liraglutide (Victoza) was funded because of shortages of the listed product, dulaglutide. Both are funded for people with type 2 diabetes who have a significant risk of cardiac or renal complications.

  • Liraglutide (Victoza) is a different product to liraglutide (Saxenda), which we do not fund. 
  • It is not appropriate for Pharmac to comment on how the supply of privately funded medicines is managed. 
  • There is a global shortage of GLP-1 agonists. 

We encourage prescribers to prioritise the limited supplies of dulaglutide and liraglutide (Victoza) for eligible patients currently receiving treatment with these products, to minimise the impact of stock shortages on these patients. This is not relevant to the use of liraglutide (Saxenda). 

We have received applications to fund Saxenda(external link). We are currently seeking clinical advice on these applications.

Prescribing liraglutide (Victoza)

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 are the same for both agents. However, prescribers will need to complete a new Special Authority for liraglutide(external link)

There are no funding restrictions stopping existing Trulicity patients from moving to Victoza.

Initiating treatment - He Ako Hiringa(external link)

Medsafe datasheet for Victoza(external link)

Liraglutide monograph - NZ Formulary(external link)

People prescribed liraglutide (Victoza)

Health Navigator has information for people starting to take Victoza to treat type 2 diabetes. 

Victoza - Healthify(external link) 

This information is also available in other languages:

Victoza information in Māori [PDF](external link)

Victoza information in Samoan [PDF](external link)

Victoza information in Tongan [PDF](external link)

Your health care professional will be able to advise on the best treatment options for you.

Needles for use with liraglutide (Victoza)

Injection needles are not included with liraglutide (Victoza). Practitioners will need to prescribe needles alongside liraglutide. Liraglutide can be administered with needles up to a length of 8mm and as fine as 32G.

Funding restrictions(external link) have been amended to allow funded dispensing if prescribed on the same prescription as liraglutide, or when prescribed for a patient and the prescription is endorsed accordingly. Pharmacists may annotate the prescription as endorsed where there exists a record of prior dispensing of liraglutide.

Who to contact

Pharmac can not comment on anyone's personal clinical circumstances. Your health care professional is the best person to talk to about treatment options. 

If you have a question about the funding for Victoza, email enquiry@pharmac.govt.nz