Hunt highlights new PBS listings


New medicines worth $310 million have been added to the PBS this week, the Health Minister has announced

The drugs were added to the PBS on Monday this week, with Health Minister Greg Hunt highlighting that since starting the current government has added around $6 billion of new drugs to the PBS.

“Unlike Labor, we are adding drugs recommended by the Pharmaceutical Benefits Advisory Committee without fear or favour. Labor delayed the listing of seven vital drugs,” he says.

Among the drugs he has highlighted is Ivacaftor (Kalydeco®), which is now available for children aged two to five years with cystic fibrosis.

“It’s a life-changing drug that addresses the causes of cystic fibrosis rather than just the symptoms,” Minister Hunt said.“Without government subsidy, the treatment would cost each patient around $300,000 per year.

“Without government subsidy, the treatment would cost each patient around $300,000 per year.“Kalydeco has been listed on the PBS since 1 December 2014, but until now has been restricted to patients aged six years and over affected by the cystic fibrosis G551D gene mutation.

“Kalydeco has been listed on the PBS since 1 December 2014, but until now has been restricted to patients aged six years and over affected by the cystic fibrosis G551D gene mutation.“For many

“For many families this vital drug has simply been out of reach. That changes today.“Like all the new medicines listed on the PBS from today, Kalydeco is now available for $6.30 per script for all concessional patients and $38.80 for general patients.”

“Like all the new medicines listed on the PBS from today, Kalydeco is now available for $6.30 per script for all concessional patients and $38.80 for general patients.”For the first time, a treatment for idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis is also listed on the PBS as of today.

For the first time, a treatment for idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis is also listed on the PBS as of today. “IPF is characterised by the progressive deterioration of lung function and has debilitating effects on quality of life,” the Minister said.

“IPF is characterised by the progressive deterioration of lung function and has debilitating effects on quality of life,” the Minister said“This listing will save approximately 1,470 patients each year around $39,700 per course of treatment.”

“This listing will save approximately 1,470 patients each year around $39,700 per course of treatment.”Experts also welcomed this listing.

Experts also welcomed this listing.

“Without effective treatment, people with IPF find that lung tissue scarring impedes delivery of sufficient oxygen to the body, eventually leading to respiratory failure and death,” said Associate Professor Tamera Corte, Respiratory Specialist from Royal Prince Alfred Hospital.

“The disease also places additional strain on the heart,” she said.

“OFEV works to block the signalling pathways involved in lung tissue scarring. The availability of this medicine on the PBS marks a turning point in how IPF is treated in Australia.”Blinatumomab (marketed as Blincyto®), a new treatment for

Blinatumomab (marketed as Blincyto®), a new treatment for a rare cancer – relapsed or refractory Philadelphia chromosome negative B-precursor acute lymphocytic leukaemia (ALL), is now listed, Minister Hunt said, saving patients around $127,700 per course of treatment. “There is a high clinical need for an effective treatment for these patients. Blincyto provides a means to induce and maintain cancer remission to allow treatment with hematopoietic stem cell transplant. It works by targeting and encouraging the destruction of lymphoma cells.

“There is a high clinical need for an effective treatment for these patients. Blincyto provides a means to induce and maintain cancer remission to allow treatment with hematopoietic stem cell transplant. It works by targeting and encouraging the destruction of lymphoma cells.“We’re also subsiding daclizumab (Zinbryta®) for relapsing-remitting multiple sclerosis sufferers.”

“We’re also subsiding daclizumab (Zinbryta®) for relapsing-remitting multiple sclerosis sufferers.”

Professor John King AM, MS Clinical Trials Program at Royal Melbourne Hospital, said the listing of Zinbryta provides access to an important, new treatment option for people living with MS.

“Multiple sclerosis is a highly individual disease; it can affect people in vastly different ways and so too can the treatment they’re on,” he says.

“It’s important that we have a range of effective treatment options that meet individual needs at our disposal, which includes Zinbryta, to ensure each patient is given the best possible chance to mitigate disease progression and maintain quality of life.”

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1 Comment

  1. Andaroo
    03/05/2017

    It warms the cockles of my heart, to see another minister for health get to feel all warm and fuzzy, while announcing more life saving/prolonging drugs, and how this is claimed to show his commitment to reinvesting in the PBS. Its certainly a much needed reinvestment in the largest component of the PBS, community pharmacy, utilising the skills of many thousands of hardworking, highly trained pharmacists.

    They tick all the boxes indeed:
    Straight to the S100 highly specialised drugs category – Check
    Public or private hospital only – Check
    Only prescribed to at most a few thousand people per year – Check
    Cost many thousands of dollars – Check

    New PBS spending – $6,000,000,000
    New Community Pharmacy spending – $0

    Anyone think community pharmacy should have a set amount within the PBS so when we try to tell anyone that its actually skin and bones out here, announcements like this dont steamroll public opinion to be even flatter than our industry sentiment.

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