Advisory Committee on Chemicals Scheduling (ACCS)

13 May 2015

Role of the ACCS

Scheduling is a classification system that controls how medicines and chemicals are accessible to consumers. Medicines and chemicals are grouped into Schedules according to the appropriate level of regulatory control over their availability (e.g. Schedule 4 - medicines available only by prescription; Schedule 2 - medicines available over the counter in pharmacies).

Under revised scheduling arrangements, which took effect on 1 July 2010, the Secretary to the Department of Health (Health) (or the Secretary's delegate) superseded the National Drugs and Poisons Schedule Committee (NDPSC) as the decision maker for the scheduling of medicines and chemicals. The revised arrangements also established two expert advisory committees, the Advisory Committee on Medicines Scheduling (ACMS) and the Advisory Committee on Chemicals Scheduling (ACCS), as statutory committees under the Therapeutic Goods Act 1989 (the Act) to advise and make recommendations to the Secretary of the Department of Health (or delegate) on the level of access required for medicines and chemicals.

Committee membership

Under the Therapeutic Goods Regulations 1990 (the Regulations), the Committee comprises of nine nominated members and no more than six appointed members.

Under the Act, the Commonwealth, each State, the Australian Capital Territory and the Northern Territory are entitled to nominate a member on this Committee. These Committee members are referred to as 'nominated' members.

Under the Regulations, the Minister must appoint no more than six additional members, selected through an open invitation process. These Committee members are referred to as 'appointed' members.

In accordance with the Regulations, all Committee members are required to have expertise in at least one of the following fields:

  • the regulation of scheduled chemicals in Australia
  • veterinary medicines or veterinary pathology
  • toxicology
  • industrial or domestic chemicals
  • agricultural or veterinary chemicals
  • clinical aspects of human poisoning
  • occupational health issues, particularly as a medical practitioner
  • consumer health issues relating to the regulation of chemicals
  • industry issues relating to the regulation of chemicals

ACCS members


Dr Paul Brent is currently an independent science consultant who leads a number of initiatives including a technical group developing an e-learning module on food chemical risk assessment for the World Bank and is the Principal Government Advisor for the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Food Safety Cooperation Forum. Dr Brent has extensive experience working in both academia and for the Australian Government. Dr Brent's early career included working as a researcher at Newcastle Medical School in the fields of clinical pharmacology, neuropharmacology and neurochemistry before taking up senior toxicologist positions within the Department of Health. Dr Brent moved to Food Standards Australia New Zealand (FSANZ) where he spent several years as the Chief Scientist. During this time Dr Brent has represented the Australian Government at numerous national and international fora, including the Codex Alimentarius Commission, Chair of the Australian Committee on Novel Foods, the World Bank Global Food Safety Forum, the Australian Committee on BSE, and numerous other Australian Government sub-committees on behalf of FSANZ. Dr Paul Brent provides expertise in toxicology and the regulation of scheduled substances in Australia and is also the Chair of the Advisory Committee on Medicines Scheduling.

Appointed members

  • Associate Professor Darren Roberts is a Fellow of the Royal Australasian College of Physicians with subspecialisation in clinical pharmacology and nephrology. He currently works between Canberra (consultant physician in nephrology and associate professor in academic pharmacology at ANU) and Sydney (consultant physician in clinical pharmacology and toxicology). His experience spans appointments at multiple hospitals in Australia and the United Kingdom and has held positions on peak hospital and scientific advisory committees. Associate Professor Darren Roberts provides expertise in toxicology, pharmacology and medical practice.
  • Dr Gladwin Roberts is a toxicologist. He has been involved in the assessment of toxicological data and related information on agricultural and veterinary chemicals and industrial chemicals. He was also responsible for recommendations on public health standards including poisons scheduling. As a Drugs and Poisons Schedule committee member he played a major role in the development of hazard criteria for scheduling of S5, S6 and S7 contained in the Scheduling Policy Framework. Dr Roberts provides expertise in agricultural, veterinary and industrial chemicals.
  • Dr Simon Robinson is a physiologist and registered veterinary surgeon with expertise in regulation of scheduled chemicals in Australia, veterinary chemicals, medicines, pathology and agricultural chemicals. Dr Simon Robinson is a previous appointed member of the Advisory Committee on Chemicals Scheduling and a former member of the Advisory Board of the Australian Pesticides and Veterinary Medicines Authority.

Nominated members

  • Mr Paul Harvey
  • Ms Vivien Bevan
    Australian Capital Territory
  • Mr Peter Gilfedder
    New South Wales
  • Vacant
    Northern Territory
  • Ms Uma Rajappa
  • Dr David Simon
    South Australia
  • Mr Peter Boyles
  • Mr Tim Bownas
  • Ms Jane Carpenter
    Western Australia

Meeting dates and decisions timeframes

Stakeholders should note that the timetable outlines the anticipated administrative timeframes associated with matters referred by the delegates to an expert advisory committee meeting. This timetable also reflects public consultation timeframes as required by legislation.

Scheduling secretariat

Secretariat services to the Advisory Committee on Chemicals Scheduling (ACCS) are provided by the Chemicals Scheduling Secretariat, located in the Department of Health, Office of Chemical Safety.

The contact details for the Chemicals Scheduling Secretariat are:

Chemicals Scheduling Secretariat contact details
Phone +61 2 6289 2659
Fax +61 2 6289 2650
Postal address Chemicals Scheduling Secretariat
Office of Chemical Safety (MDP 88)
GPO Box 9848
Canberra ACT 2601
Street address
(for deliveries)
Chemicals Scheduling Secretariat
Loading Dock/Basement
Sirius Building
Atlantic Street, Woden ACT 2606