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Xenical Not A Magic Pill

25 June 2004

Xenical Not A Magic Pill

New Zealand First’s Health spokesperson Barbara Stewart is urging the Government to put a stop to the proposal to make the diet drug Xenical available over the counter without a prescription.

“The Ministry of Health’s Medicines Classification Committee has deferred a decision to reclassify Xenical while it clarifies what training pharmacists will receive and the professional controls needed.

“Making Xenical available over the counter will remove the safety net of a consultation with a trained medical professional. Doctor’s appointments are one to one in a surgery while consulting a pharmacist is often a hurried discussion in a busy shop with other customers waiting, said Mrs Stewart.

“Being able to bypass doctors and prescriptions may increase the appeal of Xenical to many overweight people who would probably benefit from regular exercise and a balanced diet.

“Safety considerations should be paramount in pharmaceutical purchases. Xenical should be kept as a prescription drug, not a magic pill available over the counter with the minimum of consultation, said Mrs Stewart.


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