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Improvements to Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS) Listings

11/02/2019 by MS Queensland

Improvements to Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS) Listings

It can be overwhelmingly complex trying to understand what medications have been approved, are pending or have been rejected for listing on the government’s Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS).

The process can also be very lengthy and it’s often difficult to understand where a medication may be up to in the assessment process and how long until an outcome is announced.

MS Queensland welcomes the steps being taken to simplify this process and make it easier for us all to understand.

The first of the process improvements are due to be implemented from July 2019. Some of improvements include:

  • A new ‘consumer-friendly’ website that will eventually allow you to track the status of a medication submission from its initial submission to its actual listing as a part of the PBS.
  • Additional support for sponsors (the organisations submitting medications for listing on the PBS) to encourage the highest quality submissions. MS Queensland hopes this will reduce the number of rejections resulting in important treatments being approved more efficiently. It is currently not uncommon for a treatment to be rejected multiple times before it is finally approved.
  • Specific guidance will be provided to sponsors on addressing issues before re-submitting. This is intended to reduce the number of re-submissions.
  • The introduction of transparent pathways following a treatment being recommended for listing. Once a treatment is recommended for listing, it goes to the Australian Government for final approval which can take many months.

Overall, MS Queensland hopes this will make it easier for our community to understand the process of a treatment being made available under the PBS. We hope these changes reduce the number of medications that are being rejected multiple times before approval and that we see a more efficient process in the future.

More information about the proposed improvements to the PBS process is available on the PBS website.

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