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Medicines Australia welcomes the Government’s recognition of the importance of medicines

Monday, 17 December 2018

Media Release

Medicines Australia welcomes today’s Mid-Year Economic and Fiscal Outlook (MYEFO), announced by Treasurer the Hon Josh Frydenberg MP.  The announcements today demonstrate much needed investment into the innovative medicines that Australian patients need, with $1.4 billion in new and amended listings on the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS).

Medicines Australia welcomes the new and amended listings announced since the 2018-19 Budget. These new listings are improving access to medicines, including a listing on the Life Saving Drug Program, for patients with the genetic condition Fabry Disease and the provision of $51.8 million over four years to list new vaccines against the A, C, W & Y strains of Meningococcal bacteria and greater access to flu vaccines for indigenous children through the National Immunisation Program (NIP).

Medicines Australia’s CEO Elizabeth de Somer said: “I see this MYEFO as a clear signal that the Government recognises the extraordinary value and importance of investing in the innovative medicines sector to improve people’s lives.”

Medicines Australia also welcomes the demonstration of Minister Hunt’s ongoing commitment to the 2017 Strategic Agreement with the provision of $63.9 million over four years to streamline the listing processes for the PBS and NIP and to amend cost recovery arrangements.

“Improving the process for listing medicines on the PBS will mean faster access to the medicines that Australians need, when they need them. The Government has recognised that the Department must be adequately resourced to ensure that Australians have timely access to the newest medicines. This will ensure Australia is at the forefront when it comes to providing Australian patients with the best treatments available, said Ms de Somer.

$61.7 million over four years has also been provided for the revised PBS payment arrangements commencing on 1 July 2019. This includes $27.1 million over four years to the Department of Health to implement necessary administrative processes and continue to work with industry on the detailed design of the new payment arrangements.

“It is important to see that the Morrison Government has set aside funding and reiterated its commitment to work with the industry on proposed changes to the payment arrangements. This is a difficult and complex reform and it will be important to ensure that any changes do not add to the cost of medicines distribution and supply,” she said.

 

ENDS
More information – Natalie Wimmer – Manager, Media and Communications – 0450728660 | nwimmer@medaus.com.au

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