Codeine rescheduling – are you prepared for 1 February?
22 January, 2018
Establish a practice-wide approach to requests for codeine containing products
Managing phone or faxed requests (appointment for assessment advised)
Assess patients requesting codeine-containing products for reasons for use, perceived benefits, pain, current management and level of codeine use.
Avoid prescribing codeine or other opioids for persistent non-cancer pain – transfer from paracetamol / ibuprofen to the more potent paracetamol 500mg / codeine 30mg product carries risk of paracetamol toxicity in people with (undisclosed) dependence.
Provide patient education around alternative pain management options other than opioids. Resources and fact sheets available from Pain Australia.
Prepare to manage patients with codeine dependence in your practice
Assistance with setting up pharmacotherapy (opioid replacement therapy) service is available from your area pharmacotherapy network –
Area 4 Eastern Metropolitan Region Phone 0428 785 371
Area 5 (Whittlesea, Nillumbik and Banyule) Phone 9448 5511
Learn how to prescribe buprenophrine/naloxone (Suboxone ®) to treat opioid dependence- all GPs can prescribe this therapy for up to five patients, this 16 minute video shows how.
Continuing professional development and training for GPs is available
MATOD (Medication Assisted Treatment of Opioid Dependence) GP training can be accessed here
Consider referral to the Medication Support and Recovery Service (MSRS) where patients can access assistance with problematic use of codeine and other prescription medicines in a community health setting – a free service, available now 1800 931 101 www.msrs.org.au.
Note: not all existing S3 products will be registered as S4 products on 1 Feb and will be withdrawn from the market (e.g. the GSK products Panadeine®, Panadeine Rapid Soluble® Panadeine Extra® and Panafen Plus® will no longer be available).