Trends in systemic antifungal use in Australia, 2005-2016: a time-series analysis

Yan Wang, Mieke L Van Driel, Treasure M McGuire, Samantha A Hollingworth

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


Data on antifungal utilization trends are important to encourage antifungal stewardship. This study explored the utilization of antifungal agents for systemic use and the impact of reimbursement policy changes in Australia. We analyzed national data from the Australian Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS) (2005-2016). We examined patterns of use over time and the impact of reimbursement decisions on antifungal use with an interrupted time-series model. In 2005-2016, there has been an increase in the use of most antifungals, especially fluconazole, itraconazole and posaconazole. Ketoconazole was the most commonly dispensed systemic antifungal (46.0%) before its PBS listing removal, when it was replaced by fluconazole (69.8%). The PBS event "Fluconazole and itraconazole restrictions eased" led to increased use of fluconazole (0.025/1000 per day with no delay). Both the largest rates and numerical increase were among obstetricians and gynecologists (1,969%; 1,851 dispensed prescriptions) and dermatologists (1,723%; 1,689 dispensed prescriptions) except general practitioner (2010-2016). This is the first Australian national longitudinal estimate of systemic antifungal use. It shows an overall increase in prescribing of most antifungals during study period, with reimbursement decisions impacting utilization. These data provide a baseline to inform development of national antifungal guidelines and policies to encourage more targeted antifungal stewardship.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)254-261
Number of pages8
JournalJapanese Journal of Infectious Diseases
Issue number3
Early online date30 Sept 2021
Publication statusPublished - 2022


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