Oral contraceptives likely to stay prescription-only

The AMA applauds the TGA’s interim decision to reject over-the-counter supply of oral contraceptives.

The interim decision preserves safe access to oral contraceptive medicines and ensures people can come to informed decisions about the best contraception for their needs, as part of a holistic approach to care.

The TGA has been considering two applications to downschedule oral contraceptive pills from Schedule 4 (prescription only) to Schedule 3 (pharmacy only).

The AMA agrees with the TGA reasoning that the complexity of prescribing and risk factors necessitated regular medical reviews with a GP even after initial consultation.

There are already mechanisms in place if a person needs an urgent prescription or emergency contraception, such as telehealth, ePrescribing, and emergency pharmacy supply.

The concerns that the AMA outlined in its submission to the TGA are reflected by the TGA’s Advisory Committee on Medicines Scheduling and the Delegate of the Secretary in this interim decision.

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