The sustainability of the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme has been highlighted by the release of new figures which show Government spending on the PBS is forecast to fall by $800 million in 2016-17.
According to pharmaceutical industry publication PharmaDispatch, the figures have been provided by the Department of Health in response to a question on notice from Greens Leader Senator Richard Di Natale.
According to the Department, government spending on the PBS of $11.2 billion in 2015-16 will fall to $10.4 billion in 2016-17.
It will then rise in subsequent years, to $10.6 billion in 2017-18, $10.9 billion in 2018-19 and $11.13 billion in 2019-20.
Importantly, PBS spending represented 13 per cent of total Federal spending on health in 2015-16.
This is expected to fall to just over 11 per cent by 2019-20.
The Executive Director of the Pharmacy Guild, David Quilty, said: ‘These figures again confirm the sustainability of the PBS, and the ongoing significant savings to the Budget being delivered through PBS Reforms.
“PBS expenditure through community pharmacy is the most sustainable part of the health system with growth rates a fraction of the MBS and public hospitals, in spite of the ongoing listing of new high cost medicines. This fiscal sustainability is a direct result of the Government’s ongoing PBS reforms to which community pharmacies and the broader medicines sector have contributed,” Mr Quilty said.
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