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Across-the-counter oral contraceptives and medicinal cannabis are now easier to access in Queensland following legislative changes.

Women have been able to access PBS-subsidised oral contraceptives without a valid repeat prescription since 2012, but the amendment provides access to non-subsidised brands.

The changes will help address inequity of access to oral contraceptives, says Queensland’s Pharmaceutical Society of Australia president Shane MacDonald.

“It is important that women in Queensland are able to access the brand of oral contraceptive they require when there is an immediate need for the supply to allow for continued treatment,” he said.

Medical practitioners can also now prescribe schedule 8 and schedule 4 medicinal cannabis without Queensland Health’s approval.

Previously, only specialist medical practitioners were able to prescribe medical cannabis without QH’s approval.

Mr MacDonald said this amendment will remove duplication in the approval process.

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