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Source: Pharmac

What we are doing

We’re pleased to announce PHARMAC has made a decision to approve an agreement* with Boucher & Muir (NZ) Ltd for the supply of its insulin pen needle devices.

The effect of the decision is that:

  • from 1 June 2019 Boucher & Muir’s 31G x 6 mm insulin pen needle will be available to DHBs at a reduced price; and
  • from 1 June 2019 four additional sizes of insulin pen needles supplied by Boucher & Muir will be listed in Part III: Optional Pharmaceuticals of Section H of the Pharmaceutical Schedule.

* Please note this is a non-exclusive listing agreement and does not impact other insulin pen needle brands listed on the Pharmaceutical Schedule. DHB Hospitals that fund insulin pen needles will continue to be able to purchase other suppliers’ brands of insulin pen needles at their discretion.

Detail about this decision

In 2017 PHARMAC issued a Request for Proposals (“RFPs”) for needles and syringes.

The RFP was for non-exclusive national agreements for listing in the Pharmaceutical Schedule.

From 1 June 2019, Boucher & Muir’s brand of insulin pen needle will be amended in Section B (the Community) of the Pharmaceutical Schedule as follows:

Chemical Presentation Brand Pack size Price & Subsidy
Insulin pen needles 31 G x 6 mm Berpu* 100 $9.50
* currently listed in the Pharmaceutical Schedule as ‘ABM’ – product has not changed

From 1 June 2019, Boucher & Muir’s brand of insulin pen needles will be amended or listed in Part III: Optional Pharmaceuticals of Section H of the Pharmaceutical Schedule as follows: 

Chemical Presentation Brand Pack size Price
Insulin pen needles 29 G x 12.7 mm Berpu 100 $9.50
Insulin pen needles 31 G x 5 mm Berpu 100 $9.50
Insulin pen needles 31 G x 6 mm Berpu* 100 $9.50
Insulin pen needles 31 G x 8 mm Berpu 100 $9.50
Insulin pen needles 23 G x 4 mm Berpu 100 $9.50
currently listed in the Pharmaceutical Schedule as ‘ABM’ – product has not changed

Our response to what you told us

We’re really grateful for the time people took to respond to this consultation.

A summary of the main themes raised in feedback, our responses to the feedback received, and changes we have made after listening to you are listed below.

Theme

Comment

Pharmacy Guild

Noted its support for the proposal and that it would not impact the availability of other funded insulin pens.

Noted

Alternative supplier of insulin pen needles 

Noted that the previously recommended needle lengths for subcutaneous injections (for adults ≥ 8mm, for children ≥ 6mm) are now considered to be too long, because they increase the risk of inadvertent intramuscular injection of insulin.

Considered that maintaining a 6mm pen needle and listing additional 8mm and 12.7mm pen needles on the PHARMAC Pharmaceutical Schedule would send the wrong message to healthcare professionals.

This decision does not change the availability of any of the currently listed insulin pen needles. Pen needle lengths ranging from 4 mm to 12.7 mm are already listed on the Pharmaceutical Schedule.

Health care professionals, and people using insulin pen needles, will have the choice on which of the five listed pen needle sizes are most appropriate, based on the individual clinical circumstance.

Ministry of Health

Advising no technical resource impacts anticipated as a result of proposal 

Noted

If you have any questions about this decision, you can email us at enquiry@pharmac.govt.nz; or call our toll free number (9 am to 5 pm, Monday to Friday) on 0800 66 00 50.

Last updated: 16 April 2019

MIL OSI