Australian Pharmaceutical Industry Codes
The Australian medicines industry (pharmaceutical, OTC and complementary healthcare) is regulated by a number of codes.
The prescription medicines segment of the market is regulated through its industry body, Medicines Australia,
This body uses its own code of practice: the Medicines Australia Code of Conduct which “sets the standards for the ethical marketing and promotion of prescription pharmaceutical products in Australia. It complements the legislation requirements of the Therapeutic Goods Regulations and the Therapeutic Goods Act” (See Medicines Australia website: http://www.medicinesaustralia.com.au/pages/page5.asp).
The most current version of the MA Code of Conduct is Edition 15, which took effect December 2006.
Review the MA Code of Conduct Guidelines v.3 (to be read in conjunction with Edition 15)
The non-prescription medicines segment includes both OTC and complementary Healthcare products. There are two industry bodies that represent companies in the Non-prescription segment of the medicines industry.
This segment is governed by the following codes:
CHC Code of Practice for the marketing of Complementary Healthcare & Healthfood Products: defined as “a code which promotes regulatory compliance as well as high standards of professionalism, in keeping with our commitment to ensure the integrity of healthcare products available to the community. The Code of Practice applies to the marketing of all complementary healthcare products.” (See Complementary Healthcare Council website: http://www.chc.org.au/AboutUs/CodeofPractice/).
Complementary healthcare products include (but are not limited to) vitamin, mineral and nutritional supplements, herbal, homoeopathic, arthroposophic, essence and aromatherapy products.
Therapeutic Goods Advertising Code, TGAC: a legal code based on Commonwealth legislation. It sets out requirements that must be met by law that covers promotion of ‘therapeutic goods' to consumers.
Price Information Code of Practice: a voluntary code of practice based on the “Galbally Review” pertaining to the way pricing is used to promote drugs scheduled S3 (Pharmacist Only); S4 (Prescription Only); S8 (restricted drugs).