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An ecological study of the extent and factors associated with the use of prescription and over-the-counter codeine in Australia

Citation

Gisev, N and Nielsen, S and Cama, E and Larance, B and Bruno, R and Degenhardt, L, An ecological study of the extent and factors associated with the use of prescription and over-the-counter codeine in Australia, European Journal of Clinical Pharmacology, 72, (4) pp. 469-494. ISSN 0031-6970 (2016) [Refereed Article]

Copyright Statement

Copyright Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2015

DOI: doi:10.1007/s00228-015-1995-8

Abstract

Purpose: The extent and factors associated with codeine use in the community remain poorly understood despite the widespread global use of codeine. The aim of this study was to examine the use of prescription and over-the-counter (OTC) codeine in Australia and identify the geographic and socio-demographic characteristics associated with prescription and OTC codeine use.

Methods: National sales data for prescription and OTC codeine (supplied by IMS Health) were used to estimate codeine utilisation (in pack sales and milligrammes) in Australia during 2013, mapped to Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) Statistical Local Areas (SLAs) and Remoteness Areas. Socio-demographic characteristics and total population estimates of SLAs were obtained from the ABS. SLA-level data on sex, age distribution, income, occupations involving physical labour and number of pharmacies were included in linear regression analyses to examine their association with total, prescription and OTC codeine use.

Results: In total, 27,780,234 packs of codeine were sold in Australia during 2013, equating to 12,376 kg. OTC codeine preparations accounted for 15,490,207 packs (55.8 %) or 4967.30 kg (40.1 %). Nationally, an estimated 1.24 packs (or 554.10 mg) of codeine were sold per person; utilisation was higher in more remote areas. SLAs with a higher percentage of low-income earning households had the highest rates of prescription codeine use (β 0.16, p < 0.001), whereas SLAs with a higher percentage of males had the highest rates of OTC codeine use (β 0.22, p < 0.001).

Conclusions: Codeine use is common in Australia, with clear distinctions in the geographic and socio-demographic characteristics associated with prescription and OTC codeine use.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:analgesics, opioids, non-prescription drugs, codeine, pharmacoepidemiology, drug utilisation
Research Division:Psychology and Cognitive Sciences
Research Group:Other Psychology and Cognitive Sciences
Research Field:Psychology and Cognitive Sciences not elsewhere classified
Objective Division:Health
Objective Group:Public Health (excl. Specific Population Health)
Objective Field:Substance Abuse
Author:Bruno, R (Associate Professor Raimondo Bruno)
ID Code:106557
Year Published:2016 (online first 2015)
Web of Science® Times Cited:12
Deposited By:Psychology
Deposited On:2016-02-13
Last Modified:2017-11-02
Downloads:0

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