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Health and Aged Care

Five-year Strategic Agreements provide medicine benefits for Aussies

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Strategic Agreements provides medicine benefits for Aussies

Australians can now have affordable, improved and guaranteed access to medicines thanks to the landmark long-term Strategic Agreements between the Australian Government and the medicine industry.  

The Government’s five-year Strategic Agreements between Medicines Australia and the Generic and Biosimilar Medicines Association (GBMA) is integral as it allows Australians access to innovative life-saving and life-changing medicines, vaccines and other novel therapies. 

Under the new five-year Strategic Agreements, the following key measures have been included: 

  • An expected investment of approximately $5 billion in PBS medicines listings over the life of the agreement 
  • The co-design and implementation of an Enhanced Consumer Engagement Process to capture the patient voice early in the medicines assessment process. 
  • Ongoing timely access to medicines through enhancements to Australia’s already world-leading Health Technology Assessment (HTA) policy and methods. 
  • Implementation of a Medicines Supply Security Guarantee, which includes an agreed commitment by companies to hold additional onshore stock of critical medicines to protect patients against supply chain volatility. 
  • An improved statutory pricing system for medicines 
  • A Horizon Scanning Forum for early access to breakthrough treatments 
  • Commitments to policy stability and predictability for the industry and Government. 

The Agreements are also expected to strengthen Australia’s world-leading Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme for patients, ensuring improved stability, predictability and viability for the medicines industry. 

“These agreements will also reduce the cost of prescription medicines and bolster the supply of medicines available through the PBS,” Minister for Health and Aged Care Greg Hunt said. 

“They will also ensure that pharmacy shelves across Australia are continuously stocked with PBS medicines – and that Australians will have early access to new life-changing medicines regardless of where they live.” 

The new Medicines Supply Security Guarantee will allow manufacturers to better manage supply chain risks for critical medicines, further protecting patients, pharmacists, and prescribers from the impact of the global and domestic medicine supply shortages and interruptions. 

Consumers and patients are also prioritised under the Agreements, as they are now given opportunities to be more closely engaged in the Pharmaceutical Benefits Advisory Committee (PBAC) assessments for PBS medicines listings. 

These agreements will also oversee improvements to Australia’s world-class medicines assessment processes to ensure Australia keeps pace with the ever-changing advances in medicine and so that Australians can access the latest health technologies as soon as possible.

SOURCE: DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH MEDIA RELEASE

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