Waitemata DHB Mental Health and Addictions Service Choice and Medication

Welcome to Waitemata DHB Mental Health and Addictions Service Choice and Medication

PLEASE NOTE: This website has been licensed to the Waitemata District Health Board only. Unlicensed use from any other region within New Zealand is strictly prohibited and may be liable to prosecution.

These resources have been developed for, and are paid for by, Waitemata DHB as part of a plan to develop a New Zealand-wide mental health medicine resource. Thus, use by any organisation other than Waitemata DHB is illegal. Sadly, despite our continued efforts since 2015, a NZ-wide subscription has not transpired and this means that these resources to help you help your patients and carers cannot be further developed e.g. more translation languages, very easy-read leaflets etc.
If your organisation would like to subscribe please email lisa.yates@choiceandmedication.org.uk or alternatively email clive.bensemann@hqsc.govt.nz to ask him about an NZ subscription.

This website gives information about prescription medication used in recovery from mental health and/or addiction problems in New Zealand. This service is free to the public. If you are taking (or are thinking about taking) medication for such problems, if you care for someone who does or if you just want to know more, this website is for you! This is a new service that is being piloted from May 2015. The pilot is being run by Waitemata DHB and supported by the Office of the Health and Disability Commissioner. We are running this website for people living in the Waitemata region.

We need to know what you think!
This pilot project is to test whether people using mental health and addiction services think this website is useful and has the information they need about their medication. If you think it should still be available after the pilot then we need to hear from you. It would be great if you could answer our survey (it’s anonymous so no one will know you’ve been looking at the website or have told us anything). Just click on the feedback tab at the top of the page. Please take our survey
Thank you!

Looking at this website is not the same as seeing your doctor. Please see your doctor if you feel unwell. Please speak to your doctor, pharmacist or keyworker (if you have one):
* If you have ANY worries about medications you are taking, or
* If you want to find out more about something you read on this website

So what’s on this website?
Leaflets on different medications for mental health or addictions:
Each leaflet talks about a different medication. The leaflets have been written by staff who work in mental health. They have not been written by drug companies. They answer the most common questions people ask about medication. You can read them on your computer. You can also print the leaflets. There are three types of leaflets:

  • The ‘PILL’ (Patient Information Leaflet) – This is the full leaflet. It is two pages long.
  • The ‘BILL’ (Basic Information Leaflet) – This is shorter (just one page long) and has slightly larger print
  • The ‘QuILL’ (Quick Information Leaflet) – This is easier to read. It uses pictures too. QuILLs can help people who find reading a bit hard

Handy Charts:
These are a quick way to compare different medications. Each chart covers a different mental illness (such as depression or psychosis) and gives information on:

  • What medications are used in New Zealand to help with the illness
  • How we think the medications work
  • How long they take to work
  • Usual doses
  • How long to take the medications for

Handy Guides and Fact Sheets:
These are about other things that might be important when you take medication for mental health or addiction. They cover things like weight gain or what happens to medications if you smoke tobacco.

How much medications cost when you get them on prescription:
There is a flat fee for each prescription medication. The government normally pays the rest of the cost (they fund it). Most medications used for mental health cost the same as other medications you get on prescription, but some medications cost more than normal (sometimes a lot more). PHARMAC is the government department that decides what medications are funded in New Zealand. Some medications are only funded if you meet PHARMAC’s rules. The leaflets (PILLs) and handy charts will tell you if a medication might cost more. You might also be charged extra costs for your prescription. These might be for things like having a prescription faxed to your pharmacy, having your medications dispensed out of hours or getting blister packs. Please ask your pharmacist if you would like to know more. If you are under a Community Treatment Order (CTO) with Waitemata DHB they will pay for your mental health medications. It shouldn’t cost you anything.

Getting Help:
Using this website is not the same as seeing your doctor. Please see your doctor (e.g. GP) if you feel you need extra support for your mental health or addiction, or if you feel unwell. If you live in the Waitemata area and need help urgently you can call Waitemata DHB on: 486 8900 – ask the operator to connect you to:

  • Mental Health Services or
  • Community Drug and Alcohol Services


Waitemata DHB Mental Health and Addictions Service Choice and Medication
Head Office
PO Box 1791
Auckland 1140
New Zealand

Mental Health and Addictions Service
0274 326 709