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New PBS Listings

The newly subsidised listings include Diabetes, Lung Cancer, Acne and Depression medication.

How it works:

Under the PBS, treatment for diabetes, severe cystic acne, depression and lung cancer will be available to patients for just $40.30 per script, or $6.50 with a concession card.

Ask the Minister:

Greg Hunt, Minister for Health.

“Every medicine was recommended to be added to the PBS by the independent expert Pharmaceutical Benefits Advisory Committee. By law the Federal Government cannot list a new medicine without a positive recommendation from the PBAC.”

“The four pillars of our long term national health plan are: guaranteeing Medicare and improving access to medicines, supporting our hospitals, prioritising mental health and preventive health and investing in health and medical research.”

The details:

The added drugs are:

• Pemetrexed®, a medicine for the treatment of metastatic non-small cell lung cancer, and mesothelioma will also have its authority level reduced to make it easier for doctors to prescribe. In 2018, over 950 patients accessed this medicine and could benefit from this change to the listing which will make it easier to prescribe. Without PBS subsidy, patients would pay up to $200 for each course of treatment.

• Oratane® (isotretinoin), will be listed to the PBS to help treat the 21,000 people per year with severe cystic acne, providing doctors with an alternative for patients who require a lower therapeutic dose. Without PBS subsidy, this medicine would cost patients $43 for each course of treatment.

• Phenelzine®, will be made available through the PBS for the treatment of patients with depression, when all other anti-depressant therapy has failed. In 2018, over 900 patients accessed alternative brands and are expected to benefit from this listing. Without PBS subsidy the medicine would cost patients around $800 a year.

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