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


One step means less paperwork for cholesterol drug

8 August 2005

One step means less paperwork for cholesterol drug

Government drug-funder PHARMAC is giving patients easier long-term access to the cholesterol-lowering drug atorvastatin (Lipitor) and reducing the workload of clinicians in the process.

From 1 September people will be able to have a lifetime Special Authority approval for atorvastatin at first application, rather than having to make two applications as at present. Current criteria require patients to have a 12-week trial before a second application is made.

Special Authority is a targeting mechanism to help ensure medicines are used by people who meet specific funding criteria.

Chief Executive Wayne McNee says the change is another way in which PHARMAC is responding to issues that have been raised by clinicians about paperwork.

“We have reviewed the prescribing data which shows that about 95 percent of patients go through both stages of the approval process,” Wayne McNee says. “This suggests there is little need for having a 12-week trial period, and that clinicians are very good at accurately identifying patients who meet the access criteria.

“There will be an increase in the number of patients who receive atorvastatin as a result of this change. Another benefit will be that there will be a reduction in the cost of blood tests, which are required at both the first and second applications. Now just one set of blood tests will be required.”

Currently about 25,000 people are prescribed atorvastatin, representing about 10 percent of all patients prescribed a cholesterol-lowering statin.

PHARMAC estimates the change could see patient numbers increase by about 5 percent.


© Scoop Media

Culture Headlines | Health Headlines | Education Headlines


NZ On Air TV Funding: More Comedy Comes Out Of The Shadows

Paranormal Event Response Unit is a series conceived by Jemaine Clement and Taika Waititi as a TV spin-off from their highly acclaimed feature film What We Do In The Shadows. More>>


Mars News: Winners Announced For The 2016 Apra Silver Scroll Awards

Wellington singer-songwriter and internationally acclaimed musician Thomas Oliver has won the 2016 APRA Silver Scroll Award with his captivating love song ‘If I Move To Mars’. More>>


Scoop Review Of Books: Salt River Songs by Sam Hunt

Colin Hogg, a longtime comrade of Sam, writes in his Introduction that, ‘There is a lot of death in this collection of new poems by my friend Sam Hunt. It’s easier to count the poems here that don’t deal with the great destroyer than it is to point to the ones that do.’ More>>

Electronica: Restoring The World’s First Recorded Computer Music

University of Canterbury Distinguished Professor Jack Copeland and UC alumni and composer Jason Long have restored the earliest known recording of computer-generated music, created more than 65 years ago using programming techniques devised by Alan Turing. More>>


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>>

Get More From Scoop



Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news