Consumer Medicine Information
Reviewed: January 2012
Consumer Medicine Information (CMI) is now being produced by pharmaceutical companies for medicines available in New Zealand. It is product-specific information, written in plain language, to assist consumers to use medicine more safely and effectively. CMI is based on the medicine data sheet and includes information on indications, contraindications, approved dosage, what to do if a dose is missed, effects on driving, side effects, precautions, storage, where to go for more information etc.
The right of consumers to have access to medicine information is endorsed in the Code of Health and Disability Services Consumers’ Rights and by health authorities worldwide. While CMI provides comprehensive information, it is not intended to replace or reduce the traditional role of prescribers and pharmacists in counselling consumers about medicines. It is hoped that ultimately health professionals will routinely use CMI in their practice of medicine and provide them to patients as an aide memoire to verbal counselling.
It is not mandatory for pharmaceutical companies to produce CMI. However, those produced must be in accordance with the Guideline on the Regulation of Therapeutic Products in New Zealand Part 10: Requirements for information for prescribers and consumers, published by Medsafe. The Guideline was developed by a working party that included consumers, doctors and pharmacists. As well, a field test of CMI was conducted to gauge consumer support. Companies self-assess each CMI against the requirements of the Guideline. Medsafe does not evaluate or approve CMIs, therefore, is not responsible for the information they contain.
CMIs will be lodged on this web site as they are produced. If you cannot find a CMI, it is most likely because the pharmaceutical company has not yet written the CMI.
Queries about the content of a CMI should be directed to the pharmaceutical company listed at the end of that CMI.
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