2016 May - Obligations concerning drug registers

Veterinarians who purchase, administer or supply drugs of addiction (controlled drugs or S8 medication) must keep a register.

The Poisons and Therapeutic Goods Regulation 2008 (cl 111) states that the register must be in the form of a book with consecutively numbered pages, bound so that the pages cannot be removed or replaced without trace, contains provision for inclusion of information required for each entry, and that there are separate pages for each drug of addiction and for each form and strength of the drug.

You can design your own to meet the above requirements or you can purchase a register from a number of suppliers including:

  • Pharmaceutical wholesalers
  • Stream Solutions (State Government printing contractor)


To order a drug register from Stream Solutions send an order request to streampmunswh@stream.net.au  After receiving the order request, the purchaser will be contacted by an account manager to confirm the order and freight charges. Stream Solutions Help Desk may be contacted by telephone but only after an order has been placed. Tel: 1300 786 075.

Electronic drug registers for this purpose must be approved by NSW Health.  Approval is on a case by case basis by the Chief Pharmacist and a guideline is available from NSW Health.

The purchase, administration and supply of anabolic steroids must also be kept in a register and you can use the above specifications for this purpose.  Importantly though, veterinarians are not permitted to supply injectable anabolic steroids to anyone except another veterinarian nor return them to a supplier.  There is an exemption for certain uses in sheep – see our website under Resources, Legislation, Drugs and therapeutic goods legislation, Controls over steroid supply and use.

The superintendent of a hospital or responsible veterinarian for unlicensed premises must perform a stock check of all S8 drugs upon appointment and in March and September each year.  As noted in the Hospital Inspector’s report, the loss or theft of any drug of addiction, including through ‘wastage’, must be reported to NSW Health.