Local community event to address rising prescription medication harms

Local community event to address rising prescription medication harms



12 February 2019


Local community event to address rising prescription medication harms


Not-for-profit organisation ScriptWise will host a community discussion on preventing problems such as medication dependence at GOTAFE on February 28th at 6pm.


Local health professionals and experts will join a panel to talk strategies and ways to reduce medication harms with the upcoming implementation of Victoria’s real-time prescription monitoring system, SafeScript.


In Greater Shepparton alone, 34 people died due to an overdose involving prescription medications between 2009 and 2015. Medication related overdose during this time accounted for about 89 percent of total overdose deaths (38).[i]


Local health expert and moderator for the panel, Soenke Tremper, says that many people may not have heard about the prescription medication crisis given the focus on illicit drug use.


“It’s important for people to know the benefits and also potential harms of using certain pain medications like opioids,” said Mr Tremper.


“Addiction of any sort is a community issue, it doesn’t just affect one person. It affects families, workplaces and our society as a whole and it is important that we start this discussion now.”


SafeScript will give relevant health professionals access to their patients’ prescription history of certain high-risk medications such as opioids and sedative medications.


The system came online in Western Victoria in October and in two months identified almost 3,300 patients at risk of harm or overdose from visiting multiple clinics or pharmacies.[ii]


SafeScript is due to be implemented across Victoria in April.




When: 28 February 2018, 6:00 – 7:30pm

Where: GOTAFE, Auditorium, 152/200 Fryers St, Shepparton

RSVP: https://www.eventbrite.com.au/e/preventing-harm-in-shepparton-tickets-55268101379

For support or more information phone the SafeScript Pharmaceutical Helpline: 1800 737 233



For further information, high-resolution images, or interviews please contact: Lara Beissbarth, m: 0425 872 744 / e: alan@scriptwise.org.au






ScriptWise is a not-for-profit organisation dedicated to preventing prescription medication related harms through raising awareness, engagement and advocacy.


ScriptWise’s One Too Many initiative is being launched in support of the Victorian government’s implementation of its real-time prescription monitoring system, SafeScript.


ScriptWise’s One Too Many community initiative is dedicated to:



+ Raising awareness about the risks associated with long-term use of prescription opioids such as opioids or benzodiazepines

+ Ensuring Victorians understand the role and importance of SafeScript in saving lives across the State

+ Promoting preventative strategies and activities within communities


To find out more please visit: https://www.scriptwise.org.au/one-too-many




SafeScript is a real-time prescription monitoring system the Victorian Government will be implementing in 2019. SafeScript aims to reduce the growing harms, including deaths, from certain high-risk prescription medicines such as opioids and benzodiazepines.


For more information visit: https://www.safescript.vic.gov.au/


[i] Coroners Prevention Unit, ‘Coroners Prevention Unit Data Summary. Victorian overdose deaths 2009-2015’, 16 March 2016

[ii] Premier of Victoria, ‘Media release’. Accessed Jan 2019: https://www.premier.vic.gov.au/safescript-saving-lives-in-western-victoria/

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