Dosage, Safe Storage and Dangerous Drugs


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PDL has already received reports of dispensing errors from pharmacists lacking awareness of the recent additions to the available range of strengths for Norspan patches and Targin tablets.

Norspan is now available in 15mg, 25mg, 30mg and 40mg doses while Targin has added 2.5/1.25mg, 15/7.5mg and 30/15mg to its range. These drugs are classified by the Pharmacy Board of Australia as Dangerous Drugs and must be stored in the pharmacy safe.

Many pharmacies have recently come to the attention of pharmacy authorities for incorrect storage of Dangerous Drugs outside of an approved safe. The excuse that Methadone and other bulky items do not fit in the safe is not acceptable and has led to pharmacy prosecutions. The storage capacity of the safe will be further tested when medicinal cannabis is approved for dispensing in possibly one to two years’ time; and in the likely release of many formulations and strengths of the drug.

Be mindful that Dangerous Drugs returned to the pharmacy must also be stored in an approved safe while they await destruction. This requirement places extra demand for space in an already overcrowded safe.

We strongly recommend you take an opportunity now to review your pharmacy’s capacity to store these extra items and forecast your requirements for storage into the future. Consider whether it is worthwhile budgeting to purchase a larger safe, or a second one, to support your stock levels.

If you have any questions about this topic, or need assistance with pharmacy procedures, call PDL for a confidential discussion on 1300 854 838 or visit the website.

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