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Publication of Stage 1 and Stage 2 PBS Process Improvements metrics report for 2021-22

Page last updated: 21 April 2023

The 2021-22 Stage 1 and Stage 2 PBS process improvements metrics report is now available on the PBS Process Improvements webpage.

The Department publishes an annual report on the PBS website, which includes a subset of the metrics endorsed by the Joint Oversight Committee, in alignment with the main objectives of the 2017 Strategic Agreement.

This is the first year reporting on the outcomes of Stage 2 PBS process improvements since measures were implemented on 1 January 2021. Prior to this report, there have been two metrics reports published showing the success of Stage 1 PBS process improvements since they commenced on 1 July 2019.

The publication of these metrics has increased public transparency around the time taken to list a medicine on the PBS and has demonstrated how the Department has reduced the overall time to PBS listing since the implementation of reforms.


The Department of Health and Aged Care and Medicines Australia have been working together since late 2017 to deliver on commitments to streamline medicine listing processes as set out under clause 10.3 of the Strategic Agreement (2017-22) (PDF 7MB) - (Word 183KB).

The Strategic Agreement prompted the development and collection of key metrics, demonstrating PBS process improvements through a two-stage process. The collection and sharing of metrics has illustrated the Department’s commitment to working with Industry to improve PBS listing processes.

On 1 July 2022, the new 2022-27 Strategic Agreement commenced, stipulating in Clause 6.1 the continuation of process improvements informed by the assessment of the Stage 2 PBS Process Improvements, advancing on those addressed in the previous agreement.


For the third year in a row, the Stage 1 PBS process improvements objective, to reduce the time to listing by an average of 2 months, has been exceeded. The average time to listing in 2021-22 was 101.8 days (3.4 months). This is a reduction of both the benchmark time, of 216 days (7.1 months), and the average time to listing in 2020-21, of 131 days (4.4 months). Over the past three years, the overall average time to listing has been 112.6 days (3.7 months).

The key objective for Stage 2 process improvements is a reduction in the number of resubmissions by 50%. Following the first full year of Stage 2 PBS process improvement measures being implemented, the Department has progressed almost a third of the way towards meeting the objective with 56% of initial submissions being recommended first time, compared to the baseline rate of 48.8%. Thereby reducing number of re-submissions.

Additionally, both Stage 1 and Stage 2 metrics data indicate that a greater uptake of pre-submission meetings by sponsors may result in an increase in the number of first time PBAC recommendations. This is particularly relevant for more complex submissions which have a lower rate of first-time recommendations and represent the majority of resubmissions.

Collaboration between the Department and Industry has resulted in the successful outcomes of PBS process improvement measures. Metrics report outcomes over the past three years attest to the Department’s commitment to improving access to affordable, effective and safe medicines for Australians.