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TGA seeks consultation on issues relating to the registration of off-label use of medicines: Part 1

by | Feb 9, 2021

TGA has invited submissions on its consultation paper released last Thursday designed to facilitate indication “repurposing”, a phrase coined by TGA to describe the Australian registration of new indications for known medicines. In particular, the TGA has sought submissions on the potential obstacles and incentives to ‘repurposing’ medicines.

The scope of the consultation extends to medicines currently or previously on the ARTG, including both generic and innovator medicines under patent/exclusivity protection, but excluding extensions of indications to closely related conditions.

TGA has proposed three options to motivate pharma/biopharma companies, industry bodies and patient groups, to seek registration of new indications:

  • Option 1: Reduce the regulatory burden for repurposing medicines through measures such as fee relief, streamlined reimbursement evaluation, and exclusivity periods for new indications;

  • Option 2: Support the development of repurposed drugs through enhanced access to information relating to Australian medicines usage data, to support the preparation of dossiers;

  • Option 3: Pursue registration and potential PBAC review of additional indications for medicines, including through initiatives such as sponsorship of new indications of a medicine by non-commercial organisations; forcing sponsors of medicines to make an application for new indications (or risk committing an offence); and approving the inclusion of additional indications without the need for an application from the sponsor.

Each of the three options could result in significant legal, commercial and economic consequences for the AU pharmaceutical industry. TGA has allowed only 1 month for industry to consider the proposals and provide feedback. We summarise some of these potential impacts in Part 2 of this Blog which will be published on Monday 15 February.

Feedback can be provided to TGA via an online survey, or by submitting a response document. The consultation period closes on 23 March 2021.

Naomi Pearce

Naomi Pearce

CEO, Executive Lawyer (AU, NZ), Patent & Trade Mark Attorney (AU, NZ)

Naomi is the founder of Pearce IP, and is one of Australia’s leading IP practitioners.   Naomi is a market leading, strategic, commercially astute, patent lawyer, patent attorney and trade mark attorney, with over 25 years’ experience, and a background in molecular biology/biochemistry.  Ranked in virtually every notable legal directory, highly regarded by peers and clients, with a background in molecular biology, Naomi is renown for her successful and elegant IP/legal strategies.

Among other awards, Naomi is ranked in Chambers, IAM Patent 1000, IAM Strategy 300, is a MIP “Patent Star”, and is recognised as a WIPR Leader for patents and trade marks. Naomi is the 2023 Lawyers Weekly “IP Partner of the Year”, the 2022 Lexology client choice award recipient for Life Sciences, the 2022 Asia Pacific Women in Business Law “Patent Lawyer of the Year” and the 2021 Lawyers Weekly Women in Law SME “Partner of the Year”.  Naomi is the founder of Pearce IP, which commenced in 2017 and won 2021 “IP Team of the Year” at the Australian Law Awards.

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