3 Jul 2019

The opioid epidemic in North America has attracted considerable international concern because of the scale of the problem and the high rate of overdose deaths. This paper highlights the importance of being vigilant about the potential for similar problems in Australia, and continuing to monitor...


6 Jun 2019

Medical Affairs—a third strategic pillar for the pharmaceutical enterprise

Innovation in both digital technology and the bio sciences is advancing at a furious pace, while the quantity of data generated is skyrocketing. Business models are starting to evolve both around and beyond the...

Journal article

3 Jun 2019

Should doctors fear legal sanction for using opioids at the end of life?

A perfect storm arises from a rare confluence of adverse meteorological factors, and is a metaphor for an especially bad situation caused by a combination of unfavourable circumstances. Health care at...


11 Apr 2019

Drug-related deaths in Australia have almost doubled over the past ten years, in large part because of the increased use of opioids. In 2016, middle aged people using combinations of prescription drugs were the most likely to die a drug-related death.

Prescription monitoring aims...


4 Apr 2019

This report assesses the burden of chronic pain in Australia, including its impact on the health system, productivity, carer costs and wellbeing.


29 Mar 2019

This bulletin provides a snapshot of the sale and distribution of fentanyl and its analogues across several popular illicit darknet markets. Data collected daily from six darknet markets between 2 January and 23 February 2019 reveal the amount, types and physical forms of fentanyl available.


22 Mar 2019

This final report considers the role of the manufacturer, the distributor and Australian governments in providing support to Australia's thalidomide survivors. It also considers some of difficulties thalidomide survivors have experienced with the NDIS.

Journal article

21 Mar 2019

The capacity of governments can be constrained by low levels of public trust. This stands in contrast to ‘medical scientists’ who are generally highly trusted by the public. This article tests to what extent trusted sources can alter attitudes towards a policy proposal to regulate...


19 Feb 2019

This quick guide provides an overview of how therapeutic goods are approved, how their supply is regulated, and how they are monitored for safety in Australia.


14 Feb 2019

This report considers how thalidomide has affected survivors' lives and the lives of their immediate families, what supports are available and what supports they might need.


31 Jan 2019

This report reveals that 250,000 Australians are hospitalised each year, with another 400,000 presenting to emergency departments, as a result of medication errors, inappropriate use, misadventure and interactions.


18 Dec 2018

The opioid crisis in the US claimed more than 70,000 lives in 2017, and has further complicated the situation for chronic pain patients. Human Rights Watch surveyed chronic pain patients, healthcare providers and officials and reviewed relevant laws and policies to produce a series of...


9 Nov 2018

Opioid use and its associated harms is an issue of great public health interest, both within Australia and internationally. This report shows that opioid harms are an issue in both Australia and Canada. Rates of opioid deaths and opioid poisoning hospitalisations in Australia increased in...


28 Aug 2018

This report focuses on accidental deaths caused by drugs, excluding drug-deaths that were deemed homicidal, suicidal or of undetermined intent. This is to ensure that drugs and the public health consequences that arise from them remain the primary focus of the report without the complicating...

Journal article

1 Aug 2018

This article argues that access to new therapies is a balance between evidence (determining the risk of acceptable adverse effects versus efficacy) and the speed of availability, intersected by the issue of affordability.


25 Jun 2018

This report outlines the results of a BETA and Department of Health trial that tested the impact of personalised letters from Australia’s Chief Medical Officer to high-prescribing GPs, prompting them to consider reducing antibiotic prescribing where appropriate and safe.

Briefing paper

6 Jun 2018

The misuse of pharmaceutical drugs is a major public health issue in Australia, as highlighted by parliamentary, government and coroner reports. There are fears that Australia could be heading down the same path as the United States, where prescription drug misuse has been described as...


8 May 2018

This report discusses key findings from the 2018 Global Drugs Survey.


4 May 2018

This final report provides the review panel’s recommendations on consumers' continued access to affordable medicines, future remuneration, regulation and other arrangements that apply to pharmacies and wholesalers for the dispensing and supply of medicines and other services provided under the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS).


13 Apr 2018

America’s opioid crisis won’t be solved by the Mexican wall and capital punishment. Meanwhile, deaths keep rising, and Australia isn’t immune, writes Lesley Russell.