Targin, Hormonal Drugs Identified in Alert

PDL has already received a number of reports and one error relating to active ingredient prescribing changes

Mandatory changes came into effect from 1 February requiring all prescribers to include the active ingredient names on all PBS and RPBS prescriptions.

PDL has already received a small number of reports and one error relating to this change, it said in a statement issued on Thursday.

Pharmacists are reminded to read prescriptions carefully as prescribing software is likely to present the order of active ingredients alphabetically, which might be different to previous computer-generated or electronic prescriptions.

One noted example is Targin tablets which have been routinely prescribed as oxycodone + naloxone.

Prescribing software programs are now likely to generate Targin as naloxone + oxycodone which could easily lead to confusion or error, said PDL.

There is a report that the strengths of the ingredients may still be presented in the previous format of oxycodone/naloxone.

Other issues reported include insulin prescribed without a brand or delivery device specified, and hormone combinations including oral contraceptives and HRT prescribed without brand or form specified.

“Members are encouraged to discuss this recent change with patients so that they understand that their prescriptions might look different.

“They are also reminded that patients have a right to choose their preferred brand when presenting their prescriptions, and please ensure generic substitution does not occur if the prescriber has specifically stated this on the prescription,” said PDL.

Pharmacists have been granted a grace period to support them during the transition, which ends on 31 July 2021.

Source: , viewed 8 February 2021.