As from the 1st of February 2018 medicines that contain low dose condeine are no longer available without a prescription.
The medicines affected include codeine-containing combination analgaesics sich as Panadeine, Nurofen Plus and Mersyndol and codeine-containing cough, cold and flu products such as Codral and Demazin.
Codeine is an opioid medicine, in the same family as morphine. If used inappropriately there is significant evidence that codeine causes serious health problems. This is why the Therapeutic Goods Administration Australian has changed the listing for codeine availability.
At Midtown Medical Clinic the prescription of opioids, including codeine is always in line with best practice guidelines and this will continue even with the change in codeine listing. If you have been regularly using codeine containing medication and believe you are going to be affected by this change it is important to make a 30 minute appointment to discuss this with one of our Doctors. No prescription for codeine containing medication will be considered without an appointment, and our Doctors do reserve the right to refuse to prescribe them.
It is important to note that for most people, over the counter codeine-containing medicines provide very little extra pain or cough relief compared to medicines that do not contain codeine. Alternatives medications can be recommended if necessary.
Regular use of codeine can lead to dependency. If you believe this is relevant to you, our Doctors, in conjunction with our Practice Nurses, can help you develop a withdrawal plan and also create an alternative pain management plan.
Please note, if you are experiencing acute severe withdrawal symptoms it is appropriate for you to present to the nearest hospital emergency department.
To ararnge an appointment to discuss codeine, your pain management and your health please phone us on 9650 4284. A 30 minute appointment will be required to ensure a thorough assessment can be made and a management plan put in place.
You can also read more about the codeine changes here.