PBS News

Changes to the PBS to make medicines more affordable

Page last updated: 1 January 2023

From 1 January 2023, the maximum cost of general prescriptions under the PBS will fall for the first time in the 75-year history of the PBS. It’s important that pharmacists and patients understand the changes and how they will affect them.

PBS Co-Payment Reduction

From 1 January 2023, the PBS co-payment for general patients (non-concession card holders) will reduce from $42.50 to $30.00. This amount will then be indexed on the first day of every new year, from 1 January 2024.

The reduction will see general patients save $12.50 on PBS medicines that are priced at or above the current general co-payment. Pharmacists won’t have to do anything to apply the changes, as software systems will automatically update.

New discretionary discounting

From 1 January 2023 general patient medicines with a dispensed price above between $30.00 to and $45.60 may be discounted to any price (including a price below $30.00). The amount charged to the patient will continue to count toward the patient’s general patient PBS Safety Net threshold. This new ‘increased discount’ (as referred to under the National Health Act 1953) is not compulsory and is at the discretion of the pharmacy. Please note that the $12.50 reduction is the PBS general patient co-payment reduction and not the amount for any discretionary increased discounts applied.