New regulations for the sale, supply and manufacture of medicines and poisons came into effect yesterday (January 30), reducing business compliance costs and promoting the safe dispensing of controlled drugs.
Health Minister John Day said the regulations would give force to the Medicines and Poisons Act 2014, bringing Western Australia into line with other States and Territories, reducing duplication and making it easier for national operators to comply with the rules.
"For example, one of the changes means a pharmacist will no longer need to obtain a licence from the Department of Health in addition to meeting the assessment and regulation criteria of the Pharmacy Registration Board of WA," Mr Day said.
"The new legislation also establishes the legal framework for the transfer of information about the prescribing and dispensing of controlled drugs such as morphine and dexamphetamine, through the use of real-time reporting systems.
"It has enhanced powers to deal with 'doctor shoppers' and the ability to better assist doctors manage patients with addiction issues.
"However, the legislation also includes strict safeguards over the use and sharing of this sensitive data and maintains controls around high-risk medications."
Other changes include the removal of the requirement for wholesalers to hold a licence for Schedule 6 poisons, such as agricultural pesticides and domestic chemicals such as oven cleaners. This change aligns Western Australia with similar legislation in other States and Territories.
The new laws were developed following consultation with key stakeholder groups to ensure that they reflect contemporary industry needs, capturing new technologies and medicines as well as changing consumer behaviours, particularly in relation to drugs of dependence.
Minister's office - 6552 6200