Access to Intravenous Immunoglobulin (IVIg)

Online version of the Criteria

BloodSTAR facilitates requests for immunoglobulin in accordance with the Criteria for the clinical use of immunoglobulin in Australia, Version 3 (the Criteria). The Criteria as they appear in BloodSTAR can be viewed here.

Access to intravenous immunoglobulin in Australia

There are two main ways intravenous immunoglobulin (IVIg) is available in Australia:

  1. Supply under national blood supply arrangements
  2. Direct order and other supply arrangements

1. Supply under national blood supply arrangements

If the IVIg is ordered to treat a medical condition which is funded under the Criteria for the clinical use of immunoglobulin in Australia (the Criteria), then the product is supplied and funded under the national blood supply arrangements.  In this case the cost of the product is shared between the Commonwealth and the relevant state or territory.

The Australian Red Cross Blood Service (Blood Service) is contracted by the National Blood Authority (NBA) as the authoriser and distributor of all IVIg funded under the national blood supply arrangements.  Orders for IVIg are made through BloodNet. In seeking authorisation, the requesting medical officer will be asked to provide information to the Blood Service through BloodSTAR to establish that the request meets the Criteria. 

Access to BloodSTAR is only available through the BloodPortal. To register an individual account follow the process outlined in the instructions and tip sheets available here.

BloodSTAR has been designed to implement best practice privacy controls and is fully compliant with the Privacy Act 1988 (Cwlth). For more information about the privacy controls in BloodSTAR, visit the BloodSTAR Privacy Controls page.

Domestic versus imported IVIg under national blood supply arrangements

When a clinician completes an authorisation request in BloodSTAR the system will allocate either domestic or imported Ig product based on system rules. This allocation is based on a plan agreed between the Blood Service and the NBA, which is developed in consultation with IVIg user groups and states and territories. The allocation plan specifies the categories of medical conditions and patients who will receive domestic IVIg and the categories who will receive imported IVIg. This product choice can be changed by the requesting clinician or the Blood Service if deemed necessary.

2. Jurisdictional Direct Order and other direct supply arrangements

The NBA does not manage individual requests to access immunoglobulin products outside of the conditions funded under the national blood arrangements as described in the Criteria for the clinical use of immunoglobulin in Australia (Criteria).

For conditions not funded under the national blood arrangements, a medical officer may be able to seek access for immunoglobulin products through a jurisdictional direct order (JDO). The JDO arrangements allow hospitals to purchase the product directly from the supplier at an equivalent price to that negotiated by the NBA.  If approved as per the arrangements in place in the relevant jurisdiction, the cost is borne directly by the Approved Health Provider.

The Jurisdictional Direct Order arrangements operate as follows:

  1. Approved Health Providers can order immunoglobulin.  Approved Health Providers are entities such as hospitals that wish to purchase imported immunoglobulin. Each state and territory health department will have nominated these entities to suppliers. *
  2. If an entity is unsure whether it is an Approved Health Provider, it should contact the relevant state or territory health department to clarify this and ensure it is nominated as an Approved Health Provider to each supplier.
  3. Approved Health Providers place orders for imported immunoglobulin directly with the supplier.
  4. Purchases are paid for in full by the Approved Health Provider.
  5. Upon placement of the order, a contract is established directly between the supplier and the Approved Health Provider for the supply of the immunoglobulin product.   

*Note that some jurisdictions do not require providers to be approved each time to access immunoglobulin via the JDO process. If unsure you should contact the local health department or local hospital Drug and Therapeutics committee to ascertain the jurisdictional arrangements.

In circumstances where immunoglobulin cannot be accessed under the Criteria or JDO arrangements, it may be possible to access imported immunoglobulin directly from relevant suppliers on a commercial basis and at private expense.

Only imported immunoglobulin products are available under JDO arrangements. Domestic immunoglobulin products made from Australian plasma are restricted to treating indications listed within the Criteria under the national blood arrangements.

Products that can be supplied under JDO arrangements are listed on the following document.

Keep up to date

To keep up to date with the latest Immunoglobulin Governance Program Updates, create a BloodPortal account and from the home page click on ‘My Subscriptions’ and ‘Subscribe’ to Immunoglobulin. The latest update is available at Ig Program Updates.

For further information

Please contact the National Blood Authority on 13 000 BLOOD (13 000 25 663)  or email