A reference source about the use of medicines will be rolled out within 12 months.
After going to RFP, the New Zealand Medicines Formulary has named its preferred partners as the Royal Pharmaceutical Society of Great Britain, BPACnz and BPACinc.
The Royal Pharmaceutical Society has 50 percent ownership of the British National Formulary. BPAC is an incorporated society and a joint venture between Otago University and Southlink Health.
The formulary will provide one-stop information to health professionals, whether prescribing, dispensing or administering a medicine. It builds on the Universal List of Medicines, which was earlier released for general use.The UK content will be modified to suit the New Zealand environment.
NZMF covers clinical information as well as information related to medicines classification, subsidy and medicines actually used in New Zealand and will ensure that the same medicines information and guidance is used in all service areas.
It will be continuously updated, accessible online and by portable devices. Over time it will be fully integrated with the e-health environment, including prescribing and dispensing software.
Medication error is a significant contributor to poor patent outcomes and patient harm. Currently, health professionals need to refer to several medicines information sources to make clinical decisions. There is also a range of resources available that give variable information on “how to treat”. Clinical decisions to support prescribing choices are therefore inconsistent nationally.
Budget 2008 allocated baseline funding of $2.2 million for 2008/9 and ongoing years for the development of a New Zealand Medicines Formulary.