Streamlined PBS pricing processes to improve access to medicines
7 March 2014
From 1 April 2014, the Government will implement a new streamlined process to reduce the time taken to list medicines on the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS) and improve access to medicines. A key component of this measure will be the cessation of the operations of the Pharmaceutical Benefits Pricing Authority (PBPA).
The measure will further streamline PBS listing processes by allowing agreement on price to be reached in shorter timeframes following a positive recommendation from the Pharmaceutical Benefits Advisory Committee (PBAC).
As currently, the final decision on the price of a medicine will be made by the Minister (or delegate). However the streamlined process will allow important new medicines to be listed on the PBS at least four weeks earlier than is presently possible. At the same time, sponsors will benefit from having additional time, to the end of week five after the meeting of the PBAC, in which to finalise pricing submissions following a positive PBAC recommendation.
Arrangements following cessation of the PBPA will require sponsors of submissions to the PBAC to provide cost of goods information at the time of making the submission but there will be a transition period for these arrangements to assist industry. There will be no change to the current application processes for sponsors seeking price increases for currently subsidised medicines.
The PBS website will be updated to reflect the new arrangements. The department will also be in contact with member organisations to facilitate this information being provided to all pharmaceutical companies to ensure a smooth transition to the new expedited listing arrangements.
Enquiries can be directed to the Pricing Section.