Supply of Unregistered Products

The Stock Medicines Act 1989 permits veterinary surgeons to compound or prescribe unregistered products to treat animals under their care. As soon as a veterinary surgeon wants to supply such a product to another person (most likely another veterinary surgeon), then the registration requirements of the National Registration Authority for Agricultural and Veterinary Chemicals (NRA) come into effect. In other words, the product is now being manufactured for sale rather than use by the veterinary surgeon. Such products must be registered with the NRA or a permit obtained for their supply. Since this is both a costly and lengthy process, it is unlikely to be done. Therefore veterinary surgeons should not supply unregistered products to anyone other than current clients.

Re-packing products

Re-packing is generally the same as dispensing, and the Poisons and Therapeutic Goods Act 1966 controls the dispensing of prescription-only products. Any product which is dispensed must include both the brand or trading name of the product and the active constituents, as well as directions for use, owner’s name and vet/practice details. Verbal advice from the Health Department is that where the name and actives are clearly visible on the product label, they do not need to be repeated on the dispensing label.
In the case of those products which are not prescription-only, the Stock Medicines Act 1989 requires specific written instructions to be provided with the product whenever it is supplied to be used contrary to the label directions.
The Stock Medicines Act and other legislation are available on the website run by the Australian Legal Institute.

Anabolic Steroids

A number of veterinary surgeons have been visited by myself and an inspector from NSW Health in regard to the injectable steroid order. Further visits are planned.
More generally, NSW Agriculture inspectors will later this year begin visits to rural practices who are supplying sheep testosterone. The Order which prevents veterinary surgeons supplying injectable steroids to any person permits them to supply injectable testosterone, but only to persons whom they know to be primary producers who have sheep which require treatment with the testosterone. Relevant supply records must be kept for at least two years.

email Lee Cook


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