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Trusted sources

How we source medicines information

A number of trusted sources of medicines information have been relied upon in creating the medicines resource displayed on the healthdirect website.

This information includes medicine descriptions, details of medicine ingredients, possible recall information and links to Consumer Medicine Information (CMI) leaflets. You can read more about these trusted sources below.

The Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA)

The Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) is part of the Australian Government Department of Health. The TGA is responsible for ensuring that therapeutic goods available for supply in Australia are safe and fit for their intended purpose. These include goods Australians rely on every day, such as vitamin tablets and sunscreens, through to goods used to treat serious conditions, such as prescription medicines, vaccines, blood products and surgical implants.

The TGA regulates the supply of:

  • medicines prescribed by a doctor or dentist
  • medicines available from behind the pharmacy counter
  • medicines available in the general pharmacy
  • medicines available from supermarkets
  • complementary medicines, these include vitamins, herbal and traditional medicines
  • medical devices, from simple devices like bandages to complex technologies like heart pacemakers
  • products used to test for various diseases or conditions (in vitro diagnostic devices), such as blood tests, vaccines, blood products, and other biologics
  • the manufacturing and advertising of these products.

You can watch this video for more information on the role of the TGA.

Australian Register of Therapeutic Goods (ARTG)

The Australian Register of Therapeutic Goods (ARTG) is the reference database of the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA). It provides information on therapeutic goods that can be supplied in Australia.

The ARTG is a record of the contents and classification details of therapeutic goods. It is not intended to provide guidance, advice or recommendations on those goods.

If a therapeutic good is not entered on the ARTG, it cannot be supplied in Australia. However, there are special circumstances where individuals can access unapproved therapeutic goods. For more information, see accessing unapproved products.

The Australian Medicines Terminology (AMT)

The Australian Medicines Terminology (AMT) is the national terminology that delivers unique codes to unambiguously identify originator and generic brands of medicines commonly used in Australia. It also provides standard naming conventions and terminology to accurately describe medications.

AMT releases are provided every month and include updates from the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS) and Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA).

Last reviewed: April 2016

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