Medicine needs in the paediatric health settingPMAG has identified a priority list of medicines requiring access for paediatric use in Australia, with some alterations made at this meeting. The medicines currently under consideration by the Advisory Group are at Attachment A.
Members noted that, as a result of PMAG’s efforts, tocilizumab concentrate for injection is now listed on the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme, and the listing for cefuroxime oral suspension will be effective on 1 August 2012. In addition, the Pharmaceutical Benefits Advisory Committee (PBAC) has recently recommended an extension of the current Authority Required listing for etanercept.
The achievements of PMAG to date are outlined at Attachment B.
Liaison with stakeholdersMembers noted that the PMAG Chair had liaised with a number of pharmaceutical companies and expert paediatric groups since the last meeting to further discuss a number of medicines on PMAG’s priority list, and to seek advice on specific issues in paediatric medicine.
In particular, members noted the advice received from the Queensland Paediatric Cardiac Service regarding the clinical need for atenolol solution for the treatment of hypertension in children, and the advice from the Australian Paediatric Rheumatology Group in relation to the number of potential patients who would require treatment for triamcinolone hexacetonide for the treatment of juvenile idiopathic arthritis. To inform discussions at the next Advisory Group meeting, liaison between the Chair and various stakeholders will continue over the coming months.
Liaison with other agenciesPMAG is continuing to liaise with the Australian Prescriber Editorial Committee in relation to a potential article on the work that is being done by the Advisory Group to improve the availability of medicines for paediatric use in Australia.
PMAG will also remain involved in current antibiotic resistance surveillance activity, which is being led by the Australian Commission on Safety and Quality in Healthcare.
National and International developmentsMembers noted the ongoing national and international developments to improve access to medicines suitable for paediatric use. In particular, members are pleased to announce that PMAG has been given responsibility for overseeing the development of a national paediatric medicines dosing resource. The project, an initiative of the Australian Health Ministers’ Advisory Council, involves the development of a dosing resource containing the most commonly used medicines in Australia for children and young people from birth to 18 years of age.
The Department of Health and Ageing has engaged Adelaide-based Australian Medicines Handbook Pty Ltd to develop and maintain the paediatric dosing resource, which will be available for sale from mid-2013. The resource will be for use by all Australian health professionals prescribing, dispensing, and administering medicines to children.
Next meetingThe next meeting of the Advisory Group is scheduled for late October in Canberra.
Outcome statements are provided after each meeting, so that members can distribute them widely to their networks. For further information on the Advisory Group, please visit the Paediatric Medicines Advisory Group website.
or contact the Advisory Group Secretariat:
Phone: (02) 6289 8023
Medicines currently under Advisory Group consideration - as at 19 June 2012
Clinical need as agreed by the Advisory Group
|Clindamycin suspension||Community acquired MRSA (in skin and soft tissue infection) and osteomyelitis|
|Calciferol/cholecalciferol||Vitamin D deficiency|
|Clobazam tablets||Resistant epilepsy|
|Triamcinolone hexacetonide||Steroid joint injections for juvenile idiopathic arthritis|
|Mycophenolate sodium||Nephrotic syndrome|
|Diazepam mixture||Chronic spasticity|
|Atenolol||Beta-blocker used to treat hypertension|
|Adalimumab||Uveitis related to juvenile idiopathic arthritis, enthesitis and crohn disease|
|Anakinra||Systemic juvenile idiopathic arthritis|
|Leflunomide||Juvenile idiopathic arthritis|
|Abatacept||Polyarticular juvenile idiopathic arthritis|
|Glycopyrrolate oral solution||Drooling|
|Melatonin||Sleep disorders (particularly those with neurological impairment/cortical blindness)|
|Etanercept||To treat severe psoriasis in paediatric patients who have not responded to or are unable to receive other therapies.|
|Natalizumab||Refractory multiple sclerosis|
|Midazolam buccal preparation||Status epilepticus|
|Kindergen||Medicinal food for older children|
|6-Mercaptopurine and Thioguanine suspension||Acute leukaemia|
|Tacrolimus suspension||Organ transplant|
Paediatric Medicines Advisory Group Achievements
To date, as a result of the Advisory Group’s work, the following eight new medicines have been listed on the Pharmaceutical Benefits Schedule (PBS).
|*Clarithromycin powder for oral liquid||Abbott Australasia|
|Levetiracetam oral solution||UCB Pharma|
|Voriconazole powder for oral suspension||Pfizer|
|Lansoprazole tablet (orally disintegrating)||Wyeth Australia (Pfizer)|
|Artemether with Lumefantrine dispersible tablet||Novartis Pharmaceuticals|
|Fluconazole powder for oral suspension||Pfizer|
|Cefuroxime oral suspension||GlaxoSmithKline|
There have also been twelve amended listings on the PBS for the following products:
|Risperidone oral solution||Janssen-Cilag|
|Methylphenidate Hydrochloride||Janssen-Cilag (tablets) and Novartis Pharmaceuticals (capsules)|
|Ciprofloxacin ear drops||Alcon Laboratories|
|Dornase alfa solution for inhalation||Roche Products|
|Albendazole chewable tablet||GlaxoSmithKline|
|Nevirapine oral suspension||Boehringer Ingelheim|
|Terbinafine||Novartis Consumer Health Australasia (cream) and numerous companies for the tablet formulation.|
|Deferasirox dispersible tablet||Novartis Pharmaceuticals|
|Ribavirin with pegylated interferon||Merck Sharp and Dohme|
|Tocilizumab concentrate for injection||Roche|
The work of the Advisory Group has also improved access to diazoxide oral suspension (Aspen Pharmacare) via the Special Access Scheme.
The Advisory Group relies on the willingness of companies and thanks those listed above for their assistance in making these medicines available for paediatric use in Australia.Top of page