Back on the market

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Eye ointment supply crisis ends

Supply of Zovirax Ophthalmic ointment is set to resume, the TGA has said in a new alert.

Unused stock of Zovirax was recalled in October 2014 after metal particles were discovered in three separate lots of its active pharmaceutical ingredient, aciclovir, which was used in 11 batches of Zovirax Ophthalmic ointment.

Two of these batches had been supplied in Australia.

According to the new TGA alert: “The sponsor of Zovirax Opthalmic ointment (3% aciclovir), GlaxoSmithKline Australia, has advised that the manufacturing issue that resulted in the recall and subsequent medicine shortage has been resolved.

The registered product is now available through the normal supply chains”.

Two alternative products – AciVision 30 mg/g Aciclovir eye ointment and Virgan 0.15% w/w ganciclovir eye gel – had been given TGA authorisation to be supplied temporarily in lieu of Zovirax.

The new alert added that “the unapproved products listed below that were available as alternatives due to the shortage are no longer available under section 19A of the Therapeutic Goods Act 1989”.

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