Media Release

How Medicines are Made Available for Kiwis

By Dr Lee Mathias
9 Oct 2013

Many Kiwis don't know or are confused about the way in which medicines prescribed for them are assessed for safety and become funded.

"For the first time, in a collaboration between Medicines New Zealand, PHARMAC and Medsafe a set of informative videos have been produced which explains the process in an easy to digest, interesting format on our website", says, Kevin Sheehy, General Manager of Medicines New Zealand.

Other video's in the series discuss treatment options and the role of support groups in offering patients diverse support at a difficult time.

Dr Stewart Jessamine, Group Manager, Medsafe talks about Medsafe's role in ensuring that medicines are acceptably safe before they are allowed to be sold in New Zealand.

Steffan Crausaz, Chief Executive of PHARMAC, discusses how medicines are assessed for funding in New Zealand. Only once funding has been approved by PHARMAC do patients receive them as "funded medicines"

Dr Sue Walthert, talks about her experience with breast cancer and how she and her doctors discussed all the treatment options in her journey to fight the disease.
Libby Burgess from Breast Cancer Aotearoa Coalition (BCAC) talks about the ways in which support groups can offer patients emotional and financial support and advice during treatment.

The videos are available for viewing at

"One of our aims at Medicines New Zealand is to ensure that all New Zealanders are aware of how medicines are developed, approved and assessed for funding for use in New Zealand, so we aim to develop more informative videos in the future", says, Kevin Sheehy.


Latest opinions   |   See all