Approval of funding for flecainide acetate and beclometasone dipropionate

Medicines

Decision

PHARMAC is pleased to announce that the approval of an agreement with Valeant Pharmaceuticals (NZ) Limited. In summary, the effect of the decision is that:

  • there will be a reduction in price and subsidy of the following flecainide acetate products: 50 mg tablets (Tambocor), 100 mg long-acting capsules (Tambocor CR) and 200 mg long-acting capsules (Tambocor CR) from 1 August 2014;
  • flecainide acetate 100 mg tablets will be delisted from the Pharmaceutical Schedule once current New Zealand stock is exhausted;
  • the Tambocor brand of flecainide injection, 10 mg per ml, 15 ml ampoule will remain listed at the current price and subsidy;
  • there will be subsidy and delisting protection for the Tambocor brand of flecainide acetate until 31 July 2017; and
  • the Qvar brand of extra fine beclometasone dipropionate aerosol inhalers will be listed on the Pharmaceutical Schedule from 1 September 2014.

This was the subject of a consultation letter dated 28 May 2014 [PDF, 127 KB].

Details of the decision

Flecainide acetate

  • The price and subsidy for the following presentations of flecainide acetate will be amended in Section B (community listing) and in Part II of Section H (HML; Hospital Medicines List) of the Pharmaceutical Schedule from 1 August 2014 as follows (expressed ex-manufacturer, excluding GST):
Chemical Presentation Brand Pack size Current price and subsidy Price and subsidy from 1 August 2014
Flecainide acetate Tab 50 mg Tambocor 60 $45.82 $38.95
Flecainide acetate Cap long-acting 100 mg Tambocor CR 30 $45.82 $38.95
Flecainide acetate Cap long-acting 200 mg Tambocor CR 30 $80.92 $68.78
Flecainide acetate Inj 10 mg per ml, 15 ml ampoule Tambocor 5 $52.45 $52.45
  • Flecainide acetate 100 mg tablets will be delisted from Section B and Part II of Section H of the Pharmaceutical Schedule at some point in the future. We will notify the market prior to this occurring.
  • Tambocor 50 mg tablets, Tambocor injection and Tambocor CR capsules (both the 100 mg and 200 mg presentations) will have protection from subsidy reduction and delisting until 31 July 2017.

Extra fine beclometasone dipropionate

  • Extra fine beclometasone dipropionate aerosol inhalers (Qvar 50 and Qvar 100) will be listed in Section B (community listing) and in Part II of Section H (HML; Hospital Medicines List) of the Pharmaceutical Schedule from 1 September 2014 as follows (expressed ex-manufacturer, excluding GST):
Chemical Presentation Brand Pack size Price and subsidy
Beclometasone dipropionate Aerosol inhaler, 50 mcg per dose Qvar 200 dose OP $9.30
Beclometasone dipropionate Aerosol inhaler, 100 mcg per dose Qvar 200 dose OP $15.50

Feedback received

We appreciate all of the feedback that we received and acknowledge the time people took to respond. All consultation responses received were considered in their entirety in making a decision on the proposed changes. Most responses were supportive of the proposal, and the following issues were raised in relation to specific aspects of the proposal:

Theme Comment

One respondent considered that significant education would be required to prevent confusion and dose creep in patients receiving Qvar.

PHARMAC considers that patients would receive advice from their doctors on the use of Qvar when they are first prescribed the product.  Dose creep can be an issue with all inhaled corticosteroids and the average dose levels are reviewed regularly by the Respiratory Subcommittee of PTAC, PHARMACs specialist clinical advisors in relation to respiratory products.

More information

If you have any questions about this decision, you can email us at enquiry@pharmac.govt.nz or call our toll free number (9 am to 5 pm, Monday to Friday) on 0800 66 00 50.