Medicine Labels will be changed!

Medicine Labels will be changed!

Medicine Labels in Australia are going to be changed!  I came across this article published  by NPS Medicine Wise and thought you might like to have a read so that you will be informed if you have clients or patients who have questions. In part the article identifies the following:

  • ‘Labels on prescription and over-the-counter medicines in Australia are about to be updated. This includes the labels on complementary medicines such as vitamins and supplements. The changes will gradually start taking place from 31 August 2016 in response to new requirements from the Therapeutic Goods Administration.
  • Manufacturers and suppliers have up to 4 years to make the changes.

The changes will include the following for over the counter medications:

  • ‘the active ingredients (that make the medicine work) will be easier to find and read on the new label
  • other ingredients in the medicine that could cause allergic reactions (such as shellfish, fish, eggs, soya, milk and tree nuts) will need to be listed on labels
  • a table will be included on the new label to help you find important information about your medicine.The type of information that will be in the table is shown below.
Medicine information
Active ingredient
Indication (what it is used for)
Warnings
Directions for use
Other information

For prescription medicines:

  • the active ingredients (that make the medicine work) will be easier to find and read on the new label
  • other ingredients in the medicine that could cause allergic reactions (such as shellfish, fish, eggs, soya, milk and tree nuts) will need to be listed on labels, otherwise there must be a statement on the label directing you to the Consumer Medicine Information leaflet for more information.
  • a clear space for a dispensing label must be available. Pharmacists add these labels and include important information like your name and dosage instructions. Having a clear space for a dispensing label will make sure that other information on a carton or bottle is not covered.All medicines are made up of active ingredients that make the medicine work, and inactive ingredients that help to form the medicine.So to avoid confusion, the Therapeutics Goods Administration is updating some medicine ingredient names used in Australia so they are the same as names used internationally. You may not notice all the changes immediately, as manufacturers and suppliers of medicines have been given until the end of April 2020 to include the new active ingredient names on their labels.A full list of the affected medicines is provided on the TGA website. Some examples of medicines where the name is scheduled to change are shown in the table:
  • The updates will depend on the medicine. For some it is a single letter change in the spelling. For other medicines, the active ingredient name will change a lot and may not look anything like the old name.
  • Sometimes, one or more ingredients in a medicine can have different names depending on the country where the medicine is sold. In addition, some active ingredient names used in Australia are no longer current and different from international names.
  • Some ingredient names will also change’
Old name New name
Amoxycillin amoxicillin
Frusemide furosemide (frusemide)
Lignocaine lidocaine (lignocaine)
Eformoterol formoterol (eformoterol)

There are a range Quizzes, webinar recordings and task videos on Medication related topics on the Nurses for Nurses Network .The  Nurses for Nurses Network provides good information and CPD  on an array of nursing topics including  wound care in a range  of easy learning ways including webinars and quizzes on the  latest information that Nurses need to know – remember the Nurses for Nurses Network was created by Australian Nurses for Nurses !  www.nursesfornurses.com.au

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