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New era for PBS but Australians’ access to medicines not yet assured

Friday, 1 August 2008

Media Release

Medicines Australia has urged the Federal Government to continue with PBS reform to ensure that initiatives to improve access to new medicines for Australian patients are quickly implemented.

“A new era of the PBS starts today with major price reductions of up to 25 per cent for many older medicines on the PBS,” Ian Chalmers, Medicines Australia Chief Executive said today.

“But the challenge for PBS reform is to ensure that savings from these price reductions – at least $3 billion over ten years – are used to ensure Australians have access to new medicines in the future.

“PBS reform was always about using a more competitive generics market to guarantee that Australians will have access in the future to cutting edge therapies.

“PBS price cuts for older medicines commenced today. But the job is only half done because it’s not yet clear that Australians’ access to new medicines in the future is assured.

“Medicines Australia is working with the Federal Government through the Access to Medicines Working Group. It is hoped this collaboration will ensure future access to innovative new medicines for Australian patients.”

From today the price the Government pays for a range of generic and patent-expired originator medicines on the PBS will automatically fall by up to 25 per cent.

–ENDS–

Contact Person:

Jamie Nicholson
Media Communications Manager
Phone: 0419 220 293
Email:
Jamie.Nicholson@medicinesaustralia.com.au

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