Patients on
Schedule 2, 3 and 4 chronic medications may now be prescribed repeats of
up to 12 months by their pharmacist, Minister of Health, Dr Zweli Mkhize, has
announced in an official exclusion notice.

These medications have now been excluded from the legal requirement (Section
22A(6)(f) of the Medicines and Related Substances Act No 101 of 1965 ) in which
it was stipulated that that such substances may be dispensed for no longer than
six months.

Where the date of issue of the prescription is: (a) up to six months before the
date of publication of the notice (30 April 2020) “additional repeats may be
issued for a period not exceeding six months, and in accordance,’ the notice
continues, “with the original prescription in order to ensure that therapy is
not disrupted, if the person dispensing the prescription is satisfied that an
authorised prescriber initiated the therapy, with the intention that the
therapy be continued, and that the particulars of such sale are recorded in a
prescription book or permanent record in terms of regulation 35 of the
Regulations; or (b) on or six (6) months after the date of publication of this

“This exemption,”
it added, “shall be effective immediately for a period not exceeding 18 months
from the date of signature of this Notice.”