Changes to Codeine containing medication
Bungendore Medical Centre
Position statement regarding Codeine containing medications
If you have been using codeine preparations, for example: Panadeine, Nurofen Plus, Mersyndol and certain cough mixtures; you may be aware that these medications are no longer available without a prescription.
Codeine is an opioid and there is now significant evidence that opioids pose risks to health if used inappropriately. This is why the Therapeutic Goods Administration Australia has altered the listing for codeine availability, bringing it into line with the USA, and most of the European Union Countries.
There is scientific evidence to support an approach which emphasises ceasing codeine containing medications and looking for alternative methods for pain management and cough.
At Bungendore Medical Centre we always try to prescribe opioids in line with best practice guidelines and this will not change as a result of the change in availability of codeine.
If you think you are going to be affected by this change you will need to make an appointment to discuss this with your doctor. No prescriptions for codeine containing medications will be considered without a consultation. This will still be the case even if an appointment is not immediately available.
If you have been using codeine containing medications it is possible that you have developed a codeine dependency. Our doctors at Bungendore Medical Centre can help you to develop a withdrawal plan. The Australian Drug and Alcohol Foundation also has information and a support line for help https://adf.org.au/ support line 1300 85 85 84
If you are experiencing acute severe withdrawal symptoms it is appropriate for you to present to an emergency department.
The Doctors at Bungendore Medical Centre also reserve the right to refuse to prescribe codeine containing medications.
Our doctors invite anyone who thinks they may be affected by this change to make an appointment to discuss their pain management plan.