OTCs Under Threat In Europe: Calls To Reverse-Switch Codeine And Others In Poland And Ireland
Poland's ministry of health is calling for codeine, dextromethorphan and pseudoephedrine to be reverse-switched from OTC to prescription status in response to abuse of the drugs by adolescents. At the same time, an academic paper argues Ireland should restrict codeine to prescription-only sale to combat an addiction epidemic "verging on eruption."
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Will the UK follow other countries and reverse-switch codeine to prescription-only status? British industry association, the PAGB, responds to a BBC documentary questioning the safety and efficacy of OTC codeine.
New Zealand is the latest country to reverse-switch all codeine-containing OTC drugs to prescription-only status following a protracted consultation process, during which industry's protestations fell on deaf ears.
France restricts sales of medicines containing paracetamol, ibuprofen and aspirin to behind the pharmacy counter due to safety concerns.