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New Health target

“Better help for smokers to quit” is one of the six health targets announced by the Minister of Health. The target is that 80% of hospitalised smokers will be provided with help and advice to quit by July 2010; 90% by July 2011, and 95% by July 2012. A similar target for primary care will be introduced by July 2010 through the PHO Performance Programme.

noteBest Practice tip: If you are arranging for a patient who smokes to be admitted to hospital it may be a good time to discuss quitting or at least temporary abstinence and prescribing of NRT.

Recent change to the Pharmaceutical Schedule

Bupropion hydrochloride is a dopamine-noradrenaline reuptake inhibitor that has demonstrated benefits when used in the treatment of nicotine dependence. When provided concomitantly with counselling, bupropion increases the chances of a quit attempt being successful.

Bupropion became available fully subsidised on the Pharmaceutical Schedule on July 1 2009 under the brand name Zyban.

Chemical Presentation Brand Pack size
Bupropion hydrochloride Tab modified-release 150 mg Zyban 30