Prescription birth control rationing to continue with more brands running out

The rationing of prescription birth control pills will continue with two more brands now suffering from supply shortages.


There are issues at the moment with stocking progestogen-only pill Microlut and combined oestrogen-progestogen pill Norimin in New Zealand.

Pharmac says Norimin is struggling with a global manufacturing issue.

Meanwhile demand for Microlut spiked during the Covid-19 crisis as there were supply issues with another progestogen-only pill, Noriday.

Now Noriday is back in stock, but all oral contraceptives are only being distributed with a three-month supply at a time instead of the usual six-month.

"In the meantime, Pharmac has funded two alternative products, Necon and Microlut SCT," Pharmac’s Director of Operations Lisa Williams told 1 NEWS.

"Both are temporary solutions, and people can return to Microlut or Norimin once they are back in supply."

Patients will need to talk to their doctors and get a fresh prescription for the pills if they're making a switch from their usual product.

"We acknowledge this is inconvenient for patients and are working with the suppliers of Microlut and Norimin to restore continuity of supply as quickly as possible," Ms Williams says.