News Video | Policy | GPs | Hospitals | Medical | Mental Health | Welfare | Search


New Anti-Depressant Drug Funded

Media release

New Anti-Depressant Drug Funded

A new treatment for depression will be funded from 1 January 2004 following an agreement between PHARMAC and pharmaceutical company Wyeth (NZ) Ltd.

Venlafaxine (Efexor XR) will be listed on the Pharmaceutical Schedule for the treatment of severe depression, and can be used both in hospitals and in community settings.

PHARMAC medical director Dr Peter Moodie says funding venlafaxine will give clinicians another valuable tool to help people whose depression has proved difficult to treat.

“Venlafaxine is an effective treatment for those people who have not responded to other antidepressants, so it is pleasing to be able to provide fully-funded access to it,” says Dr Moodie.

“We are aware that clinicians have been asking to have this drug available for patients, so its benefits are already recognised. The clinical advice PHARMAC has received has also been positive so we are happy to have reached an agreement with Wyeth that has allowed it to be funded.”

PHARMAC is anticipating that just under $1 million will be spent subsidising venlafaxine in the first year, rising to about $5 million after five years. Patient numbers are difficult to estimate, but could be up to 8000, Dr Moodie says.

Since Venlafaxine exhibits inhibition of serotonin and noradrenaline uptake it may be useful in those patients who failed to respond to SSRIs or other antidepressants, Dr Moodie says.

Dr Moodie says this listing also assists in meeting the Government’s commitment to improving mental health services, as outlined in the New Zealand Health Strategy.


© Scoop Media

Culture Headlines | Health Headlines | Education Headlines


Scoop Review Of Books: Almost Getting Away With Murder

The Black Widow by Lee-Anne Cartier: Lee-Anne Cartier is the sister of the Christchurch man found to have been murdered by his wife, Helen Milner, after an initial assumption by police that his death, in 2009, was suicide. More>>

Howard Davis: Triple Echo - The Malevich/Reinhardt/Hotere Nexus

Howard Davis: The current juxtaposition of works by Ralph Hotere and Ad Reinhardt at Te Papa perfectly exemplifies Jean Michel Massing's preoccupation with the transmigration of imagery in a remarkable triple echo effect... More>>

Scoop Review Of Books: Nō Tāu Manawa

Vaughan Rapatahana responds to Fale Aitu | Spirit House by Tusiata Avi.

9 Golds - 21 Medals: NZ Team Celebrates As Rio 2016 Paralympic Games Close

The entire New Zealand Paralympic Team, led by kiwi sprinter and double gold medallist Liam Malone as flag bearer, are on the bus to the Maracanã Stadium in Rio de Janeiro for the Closing Ceremony of the Rio 2016 Paralympic Games. There, they will celebrate the fantastic successes of the past 10 days. More>>


New Zealand Improv Festival: The Festival Of Moments To Return To The Capital

The eighth incarnation of the New Zealand Improv Festival comes to BATS Theatre this 4-8 October , with a stellar line-up of spontaneous theatre and instant comedy performed and directed by top improvisors from around New Zealand and the world. More>>


CDF Tim Keating: NZ Somme Centenary

"Our generals also knew what to expect, and they built that knowledge into their planning. Each of the four set-piece attacks was fought with a single brigade, with the expectation that the brigade would be used up. A fresh brigade would then be brought up to conduct the next set-piece..." More>>


Get More From Scoop



Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news