Oxycodone Addiction & Availability of Treatments
Ms ARMITAGE question to LEADER of the GOVERNMENT in the LEGISLATIVE COUNCIL, Mrs HISCUTT
The current Australian Criminal Intelligence Commission National Wastewater Drug Monitoring Program report indicates that Hobart has the highest city use of the opioid oxycodone, which has a very high potential for addiction. Although oxycodone can be legally prescribed and consumed and wastewater analysis cannot distinguish between legal and recreational use, I note that Tasmania is one of the few jurisdictions in the country to offer the anti-opioid overdose drug naloxone only through pharmacies and not community health providers. Will the honourable leader please advise -
(1) Do the Department of Health and Human Services and the Government believe this correlation between high oxycodone use and low naloxone availability is worth investigating?
(2) If not, why not?
(3)If this is to be investigated, can the Leader please indicate what plans are in place to do so?
(4)Will widening of the scope for availability for naloxone be considered?
ANSWER Ms HISCUTT
Mr President, I thank the member for Launceston for her question.
(1) to (4)The Department of Health and Human Services is assessing the merits of improving access tonaloxone in Tasmania and will be informed by the findings of current national pilot programs while also considering the needs and circumstances of Tasmania.
Honourable member for Launceston, the Health department is under extreme pressure at the moment and they can only provide that little snippet for me at the minute. I did press them a little, but that is all I was able to get.
If you are not happy with that answer, I am quite happy to take that back as long as you are happy to wait for it. We have a lot of Health questions to work through now.
Ms Armitage - In the current circumstances, I would probably be happy to give them a little bit more time.
Mrs HISCUTT - Thank you very much. It may take a little while.