This morning, Minister Roxon is meeting
with peak lobby groups about the recent decision by Government to defer the listing of pharmaceuticals on the PBS. Representatives from Medicines Australia, the Consumers Health Forum, the Australian Medical Association and the Generic Industry Medicines Association have invited the Minister, as well as Minister Wong and Treasurer Swan, to explain the Government’s rationale for this approach. Minister Roxon has previously argued
that it is the role of the government to provide health for patients across a range of services and to carefully examine the financial implications of each potential new product to be listed on the PBS.
In contrast, Medicines Australia has suggested that the recent PBS growth figures
show that growth in PBS expenditure has slowed to 2.8% in the year to March 2011 and that the recent reforms implemented by the Government are achieving their objective. All stakeholders have raised concerns about access to medicines and the undermining of the role of the Pharmaceutical Benefits Advisory Committee (PBAC).
For an examination of the issues surrounding the Government’s decision to defer the listing of products on the PBS, see previous blog post