Salmeterol 25 mcg inhaler (Meterol): Discontinuation

Discontinuation Active

Meterol is an inhaler used for the maintenance treatment of asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and exercise-induced bronchospasm.

Meterol inhaler is being discontinued

At the end of December 2020 Rex Medical will stop supplying the Meterol inhaler (salmeterol aerosol inhaler, 25 mcg per dose). We understand there are fewer than 200 people using the Meterol inhaler in New Zealand.

What PHARMAC is doing

We sought clinical advice from the Respiratory Subcommittee. They advise that the Serevent inhaler (salmeterol aerosol inhaler, CFC-free, salmeterol 25 mcg per dose would be a suitable alternative for people currently using Meterol. 

Information for people using the Meterol inhaler

Unfortunately, the supplier will stop supplying the Meterol inhaler at the end of December 2020.

The Serevent inhaler works in the same way as the Meterol inhaler. 

The Serevent inhaler is already funded and you can get a Serevent inhaler from your pharmacist.  If you have any questions about managing your asthma or COPD you should talk with your doctor, nurse or pharmacist.

We know that changing your brand of inhaler can be disruptive. Thank you for your understanding. 

Information for pharmacists

Rex Medical advises that stock of the Meterol inhaler (pharmacode 2438895) will expire on 31 December 2020. Stock is available on sale or return conditions via the wholesaler. Meterol inhaler will be delisted from the Pharmaceutical Schedule on 1 January 2021.

The Serevent inhaler (pharmacode 2243903) is already listed on the Pharmaceutical Schedule. 

Who to contact 

If you use the Meterol inhaler and would like to discuss management of your asthma talk to your health professional. PHARMAC cannot advise on any individual clinical circumstances.

If you have questions about the discontinuation of the Meterol inhaler, contact the supplier Rex Medical on 0800 739 633. 

If you have any other questions, contact enquiry@pharmac.govt.nz