Olanzapine depot injections: Supply issue

Supply issue Active

Pharmaco, the supplier, has advised Pharmac that there is a global supply issue affecting the olanzapine depot injection (Zyprexa Relprevv).

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Update: No new patients from 1 December

Pharmac will be applying a Schedule endorsement ‘for existing olanzapine depot injections patients only’ from 1 December 2023. This means olanzapine depot injections will be restricted to people who are already receiving olanzapine depot injections.

There will be an assessment process for new initiations under exceptional circumstances. We will give you more detail on this process soon.  

This is a fast-moving situation, and we are working hard to resolve it as quickly as possible. We will remove this Schedule endorsement as soon as there is a consistent supply of olanzapine depot injections available.

Stock situation updated

Reason for supply issue

We have been advised, by the supplier of Zyprexa Relprevv, of a global manufacturing and supply constraint. Pharmaco has informed us that only fixed amounts of the olanzapine depot injection (Zyprexa Relprevv) are being made available to all markets globally.

To make sure the olanzapine depot injections stay available, supply will be restricted for the next 6 to 9 months.

Stock situation

This supply issue is a dynamic situation. The quantities and delivery dates for November and December 2023 are planned but final volumes and dates are subject to final production, air freight bookings, and arrival of the medicine into New Zealand.

We understand that availability of the 300 mg and 405 mg olanzapine depot injections varies across the country.

Pharmaco advised Pharmac that there is limited stock available of: 

  • 300 mg olanzapine depot injection (Pharmacode 2337347) 
  • 405 mg olanzapine depot injection (Pharmacode 2337355).

The 210 mg depot injection remain available for now.

Schedule listing for olanzapine injections(external link)

Future deliveries of 300 mg delayed 

The small 12 November delivery of 300 mg depot injections has been delayed. It is expected to arrive 17 November and released to Pharmaco on 20 November.  

Pharmac is working with Pharmaco to bring future shipments of the 300 mg olanzapine depot injection forward. However, at this stage, we are still expecting a supply gap at the end of November. We will keep you informed.

405 mg stock being allocated

Stock of the 405 mg olanzapine depot injection continues to be allocated weekly – as has been the situation since September. There are no changes to this allocation or expected disruptions. However, there is also no surplus of supply.

210 mg available

130 additional units of the 210 mg olanzapine depot injection has been allocated to CDC and Onelink, and some is being held by Pharmaco for patient dispensing through community pharmacies. This has been released to cover the shortfall of the 300 mg olanzapine depot injection.

If you need it for your patients, please contact your wholesaler.

Unaffected products

10 mg olanzapine intramuscular injections, olanzapine tablets and olanzapine wafers remain available. They are unaffected by this supply issue.

Advice for prescribers

Due to limited availability of the olanzapine depot injection, Pharmac has limited funding to existing patients only from 1 December 2023.  

There will be an assessment process for new initiations under exceptional circumstances. We will give you more detail on this process soon.  

Patient leaflet

We have developed a patient leaflet on advice from our mental health clinical advisors. It's available in PDF and Microsoft Word format. Note it is A5 size. 

Aripiprazole as a treatment option

Pharmac is still in talks with the supplier of aripiprazole depot injection. Pursuing a potential listing continues to be a high priority.

Pharmac has received clinical advice on aripiprazole depot injection as an alternative treatment option. Advice indicates that it would not be clinically appropriate for many people to switch to aripiprazole depot injection from the olanzapine depot injection. However, we understand that listing of aripiprazole depot injection would still alleviate demand on olanzapine depot injection over the expected duration of the supply constraints.

All other presentations of olanzapine are unaffected by this supply issue and remain available. These are olanzapine 10 mg intramuscular injections (brand name Zyprexa, available in hospitals only), olanzapine tablets (brand name Zypine), and olanzapine wafers (brand name Zypine ODT).

Other funded antipsychotic depot injections are available:

Advice for people using the depot injection olanzapine (Zyprexa Relprevv)

Pharmac and Pharmaco (the supplier) are working together to make sure supply of the olanzapine depot injection is maintained. Pharmac is investigating alternative treatments for schizophrenia and will continue to seek advice to lessen the impact of this supply issue.

You may need to change your treatment

The person who prescribes your medicine might need to change you to olanzapine tablets or a different medicine. They will work with you to manage any changes. No changes will be made without discussing them with you.

There are other funded medicines available, including the following depot injections:

  • Risperidone (Risperdal Consta)
  • Paliperidone (Invega Sustenna)
  • Haloperidol (Haldol)
  • Flupenthixol decanoate (Fluanxol)
  • Zuclopenthixol decanoate (Clopixol)

Thank you

We know that changes to your medicines can be stressful.

Your mental health team and Pharmac are working to make sure you are disrupted as little as possible.

Who to contact

Talk to your psychiatrist or a health professional you trust if you have got any questions or concerns. They know you best.

What Pharmac is doing

We are meeting with Pharmaco twice a week, on Tuesdays and Fridays until the supply issue is resolved.

As another potential option to meet the needs of people using the depot injection olanzapine, Pharmac is talking with the supplier of aripiprazole depot injection. 

Pharmac is seeking clinical advice

Pharmac’s Mental Health Advisory Committee has advised that, while oral formulations of olanzapine and other antipsychotic depot injections are available, individual clinicians will need to decide on the appropriate treatment course for their patients.

Pharmac is investigating alternative treatments for schizophrenia and will continue to seek advice to lessen the impact of this supply issue.

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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