Amendments to the Schedule 3 entry for salbutamol during COVID-19 have been rolled back, coinciding with the Pharmaceutical Society Australia (PSA) recently updated treatment guideline in the Australian Pharmaceutical Formulary and Handbook (APF) around asthma relievers that align with the National Asthma Council's position on the dangers of SABA overuse.
Debbie Rigby, Clinical Executive Lead, National Asthma Council Australia said, "The roll-back of the restrictions prompted by the pandemic around supply of salbutamol inhalers in pharmacies may see a return to people with asthma requesting multiple inhalers.
"The revised PSA guidelines on supply of SABAs detail a pharmacist’s responsibility to determine appropriateness of use, determine a person’s asthma control, and referring a patient to see their GP if necessary. Over-reliance on SABAs and underuse of preventers in adults and adolescents is a significant problem in Australia.
"A person asking for a salbutamol inhaler in a pharmacy is an opportunity to have a discussion with the patient and provide education around asthma management. We now have an inhaler that can be used on an as-needed basis for people with mild asthma and this may be more appropriate for many adults relying on short-acting relievers.
A key message is that use of more than two relievers in a year signals the need for an asthma review. As always pharmacists should check a person’s inhaler technique and encourage the use of a spacer with a pressurised metered dose inhaler."
Read more in Australian Pharmacist: https://www.australianpharmaci...
17 Oct 2023