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28 Mar 2019

28th Mar 2019

1. The Health Sciences Authority (HSA) has recalled three brands of high blood pressure medicine which contain losartan– LosartasLosagen and Hyperten – on 28 March 2019. Seven other brands of losartan medicine approved in Singapore are not affected by the recall. 


2. About 137,000 patients in Singapore are using the three recalled brands of losartan medicine. Of these, about 130,000 patients have been prescribed Losartas at the public healthcare institutions2.


Advisory to Patients

3. There is no immediate health risk associated with taking the affected brands of medicine. Patients are strongly advised to continue taking their medicine until their healthcare providers arrange for them to stop or switch to suitable alternatives. Patients who are unsure whether they have been using an affected product should contact their healthcare providers.


4. Public healthcare institutions will be reaching out to their patients. 

a) Patients whose medical appointments are scheduled before 1 July 2019 should proceed with their appointments as scheduled and their doctor will advise them on suitable alternative medicines. 

b) Patients whose medical appointments are scheduled on/after 1 July 2019 will be contacted for an earlier consultation and/ or medication review. 


Sufficient Supply of High Blood Pressure Medication

5. The public healthcare sector has made additional orders of unaffected brands of losartan. The additional supplies will arrive progressively from a few weeks’ time. Importers will also be setting aside additional supplies for private healthcare providers. 


6. There are alternative high blood pressure medications besides losartan. These include Angiotensin Converting Enzyme Inhibitor (ACE-I) class of medicines as well as other angiotensin receptor blocker (ARB) class of medicines. Affected patients should consult their healthcare provider on switching to appropriate alternatives.


7. To ensure continued availability of high blood pressure medication for all patients who need them, medical practitioners are advised to initially prescribe the medication on a one-month basis. This ensures that patients in all settings are able to promptly receive the medication they need. This may be the practice for the next six months.


8. At public healthcare institutions, patients currently on losartan will not have to pay more during the interim period should they switch to replacement medications, which will be priced the same or lower. Charges incurred for services such as additional consultations or tests to assess suitability for a switch in medicine will also be waived. Refunds will be provided to patients returning the affected losartan medication at their public healthcare institutions.


9. Patients who are concerned about their medication or are not sure if they are affected are advised to consult their healthcare providers or doctors. 


10. For more information, please refer to this link [PDF, 89kb] or the HSA website at https://www.hsa.gov.sg/sartanupdates. Please refer to the Annex [PDF, 75kb] for the contact details of the public healthcare institutions. 

 

 

MINISTRY OF HEALTH

28 MARCH 2019


Losartan is a medication used primarily to control high blood pressure.

Losartasis prescribed in public healthcare institutions, while LosartasLosagenand Hyperten are prescribed at private healthcare institutions.




Category: Press Releases