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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2018 Week 3 Hansard (22 March) . .

Page.. 1004..


(3) See answer to Q2.

Health—withdrawal of codeine-based medicines (Question No 883)

Mrs Dunne asked the Minister for Health and Wellbeing, upon notice, on 16 February 2018:

(1) In relation to the withdrawal of over-the-counter codeine-based medicines on 1 February 2018, what studies did ACT Health make in relation to the likely impact on presentations to (a) The Canberra Hospital pain management unit, (b) emergency departments and (c) nurse-led walk-in clinics.

(2) What were the findings of those studies.

(3) In what ways did ACT Health respond to those findings.

(4) If there were no studies, findings or responses, what strategies did ACT Health adopt to mitigate any possible influx of presentations to public health facilities from 1 February 2018.

(5) What were the average waiting times for appointments at the pain management unit as at (a) 30 June 2017, (b) 31 December 2017 and (c) 31 January 2018.

(6) What estimate did ACT Health make as to the waiting time from 1 February 2018.

(7) If no estimate was made, why not.

Ms Fitzharris: The answer to the member's question is as follows:

(1) ACT Health did not undertake studies in relation to likely impact on presentations to The Canberra Hospital Pain Management Unit, emergency departments and nurse-led walk-in clinics in relation to the up-scheduling of codeine.

It is too early to comment on whether patient care or waiting times have been impacted by the rescheduling of codeine. ACT Health anticipates the impact on hospital emergency department or Walk-in Centre presentations will be low as a result of the changes.

The Pain Management Unit (PMU) is not expected to experience a significant increase in referrals as a result of the codeine change.

(2) As above, ACT Health did not undertake studies.

(3) As above, ACT Health did not undertake studies.

(4) The Commonwealth led an extensive awareness and communication campaign for consumers and health professionals through the Nationally Coordinated Codeine Implementation Working Group (NCCIWG). This campaign was undertaken, in part, as a strategy for ensuring consumers could be appropriately managed through the primary care system, and to minimise any unnecessary influx of presentations to the public health sector.


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