Impact of codeine rescheduling – health professional and consumer perspectives

December 2015

NDARC: Dr Suzanne Nielsen 

Other investigators: 

Principal Investigator: Assoc. Prof. Raimondo Bruno (UTAS);

Jacqui McCoy (UTAS PhD Candidate)

Project description: 

A University of Tasmania led research project will seek to understand how codeine sales restrictions will affect codeine consumers and health professionals and are asking affected people to answer a questionnaire.

In August this year, the Therapeutic Goods Administration made the interim decision to move all over the counter codeine medications to prescription-only medicines (Schedule 4).

This interim decision was made on the basis of concerns regarding risk of dependence and side-effects with codeine use and the known availability of safer over the counter products.

In November, the TGA announced that due to a high number of public submissions on the interim decision, a final decision will be deferred until June 2016.

The research team, UTAS PhD candidate in the School of Psychology Jacqui McCoy, supervisor Associate Professor Raimondo Bruno and Dr Suzanne Nielsen from NDARC, have developed a questionnaire for health professionals and people who use codeine to better investigate how this change will impact people.

The findings will be critical in understanding the range of potential impacts, particularly on pain management.

To complete the questionnaire, visit