Oestradiol (Estradot) patches: Supply issue

Supply issue Active

We continue to monitor supplies of oestradiol patches.

Update 18 May:

There is significant stock in the supply chain. Viatris are looking to import more of the 25 and 50 mcg Mylan TDP patches. 

Supply status 

There have been several disruptions to supply of the Oestradiol (branded as Estradot) patches since August 2020. 

Availability of oestradiol patches 18 May 2023

We understand that stocks in pharmacies and wholesalers may differ from what's shown here. The product is on allocation, which means pharmacies are only receiving a small allocation each week. This is to ensure equitable distribution of the limited supplies around the country. 

The supplier advises the following:

25 mcg (pharmacode 2358840)

Estradot brand is out of stock.

Estradiol TDP Mylan 25 mcg is in the supply chain (Pharmacode 2601583) but depleted at the supplier.

Resupply of Estradot expected July 2023

50 mcg (pharmacode 2358867)  

Estradot brand is out of stock.

Estradiol TDP Mylan 50 mcg is in the supply chain (Pharmacode 2601591) but depleted at the supplier.

Resupply of Estradot expected July 2023

75 mcg (pharmacode 2514346)

Some stock of the Estradot brand may be available.

Estradiol TDP Mylan 75 mcg is available in the supply chain (Pharmacode 2605317) but depleted at the supplier.

Resupply of Estradot expected late May 2023

100 mcg (pharmacode 2358883)

Estradot brand is available.

Alternative brands of patches

We have listed a range of alternative brands to support this supply issue. Listed brandsQmay not be available.

Check the Schedule for the details of listed brands(external link)

Dosing and approval status

The dosing is the same as the Estradot patches. These products are not Medsafe-approved, as such they need to be prescribed and dispensed in line with section 29 of the Medicines Act.

Prescribing and supplying a medicine under section 29

Section 29 of the Medicines Act 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 – e.g., doctors. 

We know supplying a medicine under section 29 is not ideal. This is the only alternative available to ensure people can continue to access treatment. 

We apologise for any inconvenience this causes. 

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

What patients need to know about section 29 medicines – Health Navigator website(external link)

This is a global issue

Globally, suppliers are reporting extraordinary increases in demand for oestradiol patches. As a result, they are building up their production capabilities. Disruptions in distribution have also occurred due to global and local supply chain issues caused by COVID-19.

As this is a global issue, we may experience ongoing disruptions with supply of oestradiol patches.

Our team continues to talk with the supplier regularly and are monitoring this situation. 

Thank you for your patience

We want to acknowledge the stress this supply issue might be causing some people. We recommend people contact their healthcare practitioner if they have concerns about their medicine.

Other oestradiol products

At this time we are not aware of any supply issues for oestradiol (branded as Estrofem, partially funded) or oestradiol valerate (branded as Progynova, fully funded) but it is important to note that these are different medicines so will require a new prescription and guidance from a healthcare practitioner.

July 2022 supply issue

During July 2022, we listed the Climara brand patch to help cover the out of stock of the 50 mcg Estradot patch. Supplies of this product have now run out. 

Who to contact

If you are a prescriber or pharmacist with questions about this supply issue, email enquiry@pharmac.govt.nz 

If you use the oestradiol patches, contact your health professional. Pharmac cannot give clinical advice about the best treatments for you.