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Parliamentary Questions

Question Without Notice No. 12 asked in the Legislative Council on 13 March 2018 by Hon Simon O’Brien

Minister responding: Hon R.H. Cook
Parliament: 40 Session: 1
Answered on 13 March 2018

THERAPEUTIC GOODS ADMINISTRATION — PRESCRIPTION-ONLY CODEINE
      12. Hon SIMON O'BRIEN to the parliamentary secretary representing the Minister for Health:
I refer to the report published by WAtoday on 11 October 2017, advising that the minister had co-signed a letter with other state health ministers, urging federal health minister Greg Hunt to reverse a decision by the Therapeutic Goods Administration to halt the over-the-counter sale of codeine.
(1) Is this still the position of the Western Australian Minister for Health; and, if so, why?
(2) If not, why not?
Hon ALANNA CLOHESY replied:
I thank the honourable member for some notice of the question. I am advised —
      (1) It was not the position of the Minister for Health that the Therapeutic Goods Administration should reverse the decision to reschedule over-the-counter products containing codeine to become prescription-only.
      (2) The letter co-signed by the Western Australian Minister for Health to the federal Minister for Health committed to reducing inappropriate medication use, raised stakeholder concerns about the impact on people with reduced access to medical practitioners, particularly in rural and regional areas, and welcomed the commonwealth working with stakeholders to address these issues.