Vinorelbine (Navelbine): Supply issue
There is a supply issue impacting vinorelbine solution, which is used in hospitals to treat cancer.
The Navelbine brand of vinorelbine is out of stock. We have secured an alternative brand that is expected to be available early September 2021. We understand that most DHB hospitals have sufficient stock to cover demand until then.
What is Pharmac doing?
We are working with the Cancer Treatments Subcommittee, medical oncologists, the Cancer Control Agency, and District Health Board (DHB) hospitals to minimise any impact to patients.
We have listed the Sagent brand of vinorelbine from 1 September 2021 to ensure continuity of supply. Sagent brand vinorelbine is not Medsafe-approved. It must be prescribed and supplied 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. In this case, however, the alternative would be for patients to have no vinorelbine.
We apologise for any inconvenience this causes.
How long will this last?
We expect the Navelbine brand of vinorelbine to be out of stock until early December 2021.
This is a global issue
The supplier has advised Pharmac that there is a global supply issue with vinorelbine solution for injection.
Hospitals are aware of the supply issue and are making any plans necessary to mitigate any impacts. Please talk to your health professional if you have any concerns or questions about your treatments.
We will update this web page as more information is available.