For pharmacists

Key points

  • Reinforce the benefits and role of first-line treatments to patients.​
    • Low-dose methotrexate for inflammatory arthritis, inflammatory bowel disease and plaque psoriasis is not considered chemotherapy.​
    • Encourage patient adherence to both their methotrexate and their folic acid.​
    • Support patient adherence to rectal 5-ASA treatment and counsel appropriately in inflammatory bowel disease.​
    • Address adherence to thiopurines with patients and discuss the risks, benefits and role in inflammatory bowel disease.​
    • Encourage adherence to and appropriate use of topical treatments for plaque psoriasis.​
  • Ensure patients are aware of the risks of steroids and opioid analgesics.​
  • Biosimilars are safe and equally effective alternatives to the reference biologic.​
  • Provide information on how to administer biologics as well as disposal, monitoring and access.

In focus

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Inflammatory arthritis

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Inflammatory bowel disease

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Plaque psoriasis

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Helping consumers and health professionals make safe and wise therapeutic decisions about biological disease-modifying antirheumatic drugs (bDMARDs) and other specialised medicines. Funded by the Australian Government Department of Health through the Value in Prescribing bDMARDs Program Grant.