Australian Government, 2011‑12 Budget
Budget

Part 2: Expense Measures (Continued)

Health and Ageing

Aged Care — additional community places

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Health and Ageing 5.1 ‑11.7 ‑27.0 ‑34.8 ‑57.8
Department of Veterans' Affairs ‑7.9 ‑14.8 ‑18.1 ‑20.3 ‑24.3
Total ‑2.8 ‑26.6 ‑45.2 ‑55.1 ‑82.1

The Government will ensure additional high‑level community aged care places are made available by temporarily adjusting the balance between high‑level community aged care and high‑level residential aged care.

This measure reflects the current preference of many older people to stay in their own home for as long as possible while accessing care services.

This measure will provide savings of $211.7 million over five years from 2010‑11, due to the lower costs associated with delivering care at home.

As part of the Government's commitment to reform of the aged care system it will consider long term funding for community and residential aged care.

Aged Care — Residential aged care viability supplement — continuation and expansion

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Health and Ageing 13.3
Department of Veterans' Affairs 2.4
Department of Human Services 0.2
Total 15.8
Related capital ($m)
Department of Human Services 0.2

The Government will provide $16.0 million in 2011‑12 to continue and expand the 2009‑10 Budget measure Aged care viability supplements — increase. This funding includes $8.3 million to continue the increased residential viability supplement available to eligible aged care providers, and $7.7 million to provide a further supplement to aged care homes in rural and remote Australia that are facing financial pressure. These homes include those that specialise in caring for homeless and Indigenous Australians.

The viability supplement helps to ensure aged care providers in rural and remote locations remain viable.

Viability supplements are paid to eligible aged care providers who provide Residential Care, Multi‑Purpose Services and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Flexible Services. Eligibility is determined by a points system which determines the level of supplement provided to the aged care provider.

The Government will be reviewing aged care funding arrangements following the outcome of the Productivity Commission inquiry into aged care, Caring for Older Australians.

Aged care accommodation facility in Hughenden — contribution

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Health and Ageing 4.4

The Government will provide $4.4 million in 2011‑12 towards the development of an aged care accommodation facility at Hughenden, Queensland. The facility will include an accommodation and recreation area for older Australians as well as providing a centre for the local council to base its aged care services.

Australian National Radiation Dose Register — continuation

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Australian Radiation Protection and Nuclear Safety Agency 0.6 0.5 0.4 0.4
Department of Resources, Energy and Tourism ‑0.6 ‑0.5 ‑0.4 ‑0.4
Total

The Government will provide $1.9 million over four years to continue the Australian National Radiation Dose Register (ANRDR) for the uranium mining and milling industry.

The ANRDR is a database designed to record the radiological dose history of workers in the uranium mining and milling industry. This ensures that occupationally exposed workers are supported through accurate recording of any potential radiation doses they receive in the course of their normal duties.

This measure builds on the 2008‑09 Budget measure Management of Australia's uranium resources.

The cost of this measure will be met from within the existing resourcing of the Department of Resources, Energy and Tourism.

Australian Red Cross Society — additional funding — extension

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Health and Ageing 5.1

The Government will provide $5.1 million in 2011‑12 to the Australian Red Cross Society. This extends the 2009‑10 Budget measure titled Australian Red Cross Society — additional funding for a further year. These funds will assist the Australian Red Cross Society to perform its health‑related work in humanitarian relief and community support in Australia and the region.

Better access initiative for occupational therapists and social workers — continuation

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Health and Ageing
Medicare Australia
Total

The Government will provide $52.6 million over four years from 2010‑11 to allow social workers and occupational therapists to continue to provide Medicare funded mental health services under the Better Access to Mental Health Care initiative.

Funding for this measure was included as a 'decision taken but not yet announced' in the Mid‑Year Economic and Fiscal Outlook 2010‑11.

Further information can be found in the joint media release of 12 November 2010 issued by the Minister for Health and Ageing and the Minister for Mental Health and Ageing.

Bringing Them Home and Expanding Link Up Programs for the Stolen Generations — continuation

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Health and Ageing 2.5 10.3 11.9 14.4

The Government will provide $39.1 million over four years to continue the Link Up and Bringing Them Home programs. These programs assist Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples separated from their families as a result of past removal policies with counselling, tracing their family, and family reunions.

Cancer Australia — building cancer expertise in the new Cancer Australia

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Cancer Australia ‑0.5 ‑0.4 0.5 0.4

The Government will redirect $20.0 million over four years of Cancer Australia's existing funding from administered programs to departmental expenses as part of the transition to the new Cancer Australia, which will commence operations on 1 July 2011. This will enable Cancer Australia to directly employ scientific researchers and clinical experts in the research and treatment of cancers, develop best practice treatment practices, and engage with clinicians and patient groups to improve cancer care across all cancer groups.

Funding of $0.9 million will also be reprofiled across the forward estimates as part of this measure.

See also the related expense measure titled Cancer Australia — maintaining support for women with gynaecological cancers.

Cancer Australia — maintaining support for women with gynaecological cancers

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Cancer Australia 1.2 1.6 1.6 1.6

The Government will provide $6.1 million over four years to continue supporting the National Centre for Gynaecological Cancers. This funding will assist the Centre to provide resources to health professionals for the treatment of gynaecological cancer, commission research and clinical trials, and maintain cancer information resources for consumers.

Following the merger of Cancer Australia and the National Breast and Ovarian Cancer Centre from 1 July 2011, the National Centre for Gynaecological Cancers will operate as part of the new Cancer Australia.

See also the related expense measure titled Cancer Australia — building cancer expertise in the new Cancer Australia.

Cancer Australia — supporting men with prostate cancer

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Cancer Australia 1.3 1.3 1.3

The Government will provide $4.0 million over three years for Cancer Australia to support the Prostate Cancer Foundation of Australia to deliver a support program for men with prostate cancer. This funding will be used to develop support kits and self management aids for those diagnosed with prostate cancer, as well as information and support for families and carers. This measure also provides seed funding to establish 90 support groups.

Coordinated diabetes care — pilot

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Health and Ageing

The Government will provide $30.0 million over four years from 2010‑11 to develop and implement a pilot program to trial the proposed design and patient outcomes of the 2010‑11 Budget measure titled National Health and Hospitals Network — General practice and primary care — coordinated diabetes care.

Funding for this measure was included as a 'decision taken but not yet announced' in the Mid‑Year Economic and Fiscal Outlook 2010‑11. See also the related expense measure titled National Health and Hospital Network — General practice and primary care — coordinated diabetes care — deferral.

Further information can be found in the press release of 12 November 2010 issued by the Minister for Health and Ageing.

Council of Australian Governments Diabetes Grants — rationalisation

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Health and Ageing ‑16.2 ‑16.5 ‑16.8

The Government will cease funding from 2012‑13 for the diabetes grant component of the 2007‑08 Budget measure COAG — reducing the risk of type‑2 diabetes.

The Minister for Health and Ageing has announced the commencement of a pilot of the Coordinated Care for Diabetes reform, which aims to address the growth in type‑2 diabetes. The pilot will test a new model of care to provide greater flexibility in the delivery of general practice primary health care services for the treatment and ongoing management of people with diabetes.

Further information can be found in the press release of 12 November 2010 issued by the Minister for Health and Ageing.

This measure will provide savings of $49.5 million over three years. Savings from this measure will be redirected to support other Government priorities.

Dental Health — dental internship year

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Health and Ageing 14.3 17.2 11.0 10.2

The Government will provide $52.6 million over four years to introduce a voluntary dental internship year. Up to 50 voluntary dental internship places will be funded per annum, commencing in 2013.

Funding will also be used to establish infrastructure to support the intern places and to cover costs associated with implementing and evaluating the scheme.

This measure targets the public dental health system and intern placements will generally be in public dental facilities.

Dental Health — National Advisory Council

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Health and Ageing 0.5

The Government will provide $0.5 million in 2011‑12 to fund a National Advisory Council on Dental Health.

The Advisory Council will comprise members with expertise on dental health care in Australia. Secretariat support will be provided by the Department of Health and Ageing.

The Advisory Council will assist the Government through the development and provision of advice to the Minister for Health and Ageing on dental health, including prioritising areas for improvement.

In line with the Government's agreement with the Australian Greens, the Government has committed that significant reforms to dental health will be a priority for the 2012‑13 Budget.

Diagnostic Imaging — reforms

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Health and Ageing 2.5 6.9 38.2 55.1
Department of Human Services 0.1 0.1 0.1 0.1
Department of Veterans' Affairs .. 0.1 0.5 0.8
Total 2.5 7.1 38.8 55.9

The Government will provide $104.4 million over four years to improve and expand the provision of diagnostic imaging services, with a particular focus on Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) services.

The package includes $75.5 million over two years to allow general practioners (GPs) to refer patients for some MRI services. At present, only specialists can refer patients to MRI services. Allowing GPs to refer patients for those services that are clinically appropriate and best treated by a GP will give patients faster and easier access to Medicare eligible MRI services. The package also includes $18.4 million over four years to increase the number of Medicare eligible MRI units from 125 to 208 by 2014‑15. The bulk billing incentive for MRI services will increase from 95 per cent to 100 per cent of the Schedule Fee, to encourage the provision of services with no out of pocket costs for patients.

The Government will also provide $1.2 million over three years for the development of clinical guidelines for diagnostic imaging services. This will assist GPs in referring patients for the most appropriate diagnostic imaging procedure. Funding for this part of the package is already included in the forward estimates.

Following consultation with the profession, the Government will not proceed with a trial for Image Only items that was announced in the 2009‑10 Budget. The trial was to have considered a different rebate structure for certain x‑ray procedures that do not require a specialist radiologist report.

Establishing Quality Health Standards in Indigenous Health Services — continuation

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Health and Ageing ‑3.0 ‑2.4 ‑2.5 ‑2.8

The Government will provide $35.0 million over four years to continue funding support to eligible Indigenous health organisations to assist them achieve clinical and organisational accreditation. This will help Indigenous health organisations to achieve best practice care standards.

Funding for the program has already been included in the forward estimates. This measure will deliver savings of $10.8 million over four years from 2011‑12 as a number of organisations have now been accredited and have the ability to access other financial incentives from Government to maintain accreditation.

Savings from this measure will be redirected to support other Government priorities.

Health and Ageing portfolio — administrative efficiencies

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Health and Ageing 26.3 ‑14.0 ‑30.1 ‑38.8
Various Agencies 2.0 0.6 0.3 0.3
Total 28.3 ‑13.5 ‑29.8 ‑38.5

The Government will streamline and improve program delivery in the Health and Ageing portfolio to better respond to emerging health priorities. A large number of existing programs in the portfolio will be replaced by 20 new or expanded funds, with no reduction in program funding. This will enable more efficient program management and better targeting of available resources.

These changes follow a review of administrative arrangements in the portfolio which deliver reductions in administrative costs.

This measure provides net administrative savings of $53.5 million over four years which will be redirected to support other Government priorities.

Health and Hospitals Fund — Regional Priority Round

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of the Treasury 66.6 95.5 192.2 265.8
Department of Health and Ageing 43.4 104.5 116.0 85.0
Total 110.0 200.0 308.2 350.8

The Government will provide $1.8 billion over six years from the Health and Hospitals Fund (HHF) to support the development of health infrastructure in regional areas.

The Commonwealth will expand and modernise key health infrastructure including hospitals across Australia to improve the provision of health care in regional areas. Funding will be provided for a range of health services including elective surgery capacity, enhanced sub‑acute care services and emergency department facilities, improved access to dental services, renal dialysis units, mental care facilities, primary care infrastructure and Indigenous health care infrastructure.

The Government will provide $1.33 billion for 63 projects across Australia. This provides new funding of $1.0 billion over five years (including $265.5 million in 2015‑16) for new projects. All funded projects have been deemed eligible for funds by the independent HHF Advisory Board. Funding of $315.0 million (including $81.4 million in 2015‑16) for two of the projects, the Royal Hobart Hospital and Port Macquarie Base Hospital, has already been included in the forward estimates.

The Government will also provide $475.0 million to fund a further Regional Priority Round from the HHF. This funding has been placed in the contingency reserve and will be provided once specific projects are determined at the end of this second round.

This delivers on the Government's agreement with the Member for Lyne and the Member for New England. Further information on specific projects to be funded can be found in the publication Health Overview — Delivering Better Hospitals, Mental Health and Health Services of 10 May 2011.

Healthy and active ageing — Ambassador for the Ageing program — continuation

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Health and Ageing ‑0.1 ‑0.2 ‑0.2 ‑0.2

The Government will provide $1.1 million over four years to continue the Ambassador for the Ageing program. The Ambassador will support a healthy, independent older population by participating in major events such as the International Day of Older Persons, Seniors Weeks and exhibitions across Australia to inform older Australians about Australian Government services and support.

This measure continues the 2008‑09 Budget measure Health and Hospitals Reform — Aged Care — National Elderly Commissioner — Ambassador for Ageing.

Savings from this measure will be redirected to support other Government priorities.

Hearing Services Program — better targeted services

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Health and Ageing 3.9 ‑25.0 ‑35.8 ‑79.4
Related capital ($m)
Department of Health and Ageing 2.5 4.0 4.0 3.5

The Government will introduce reform to the Australian Government Hearing Services Program to deliver more responsive and better targeted services, resulting in a net save of $122.3 million over four years.

The measure will deliver savings by extending the period for the reissuing of client vouchers from two years to three years. This will better align client services with clinical need. People with a clinical need can be reassessed within the three years and access services earlier if they are eligible. Service delivery will be improved through the introduction of electronic processing systems.

Savings from this measure will be redirected to support other Government priorities.

Hearing Services Program — improved access to hearing services

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Health and Ageing 5.3 11.7 14.1 16.7

The Government will provide an additional $47.7 million over four years to improve access to services under the Australian Government Hearing Services Program.

The Government will address current pressures in the Community Service Obligations (CSO) component by adjusting program funding to provide for population growth and increased take up of implantable technology such as cochlear devices. Access to the CSO component of the program will be expanded to include young adults aged between 21 and 25 inclusive, to ensure that eligible hearing impaired young Australians receive support while they are studying, training or establishing their careers.

See also the related savings measure titled Hearing Services Program — better targeted services.

Human Papillomavirus Vaccination Program Register

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Health and Ageing 3.5 3.7 3.8 4.0

The Government will provide $15.0 million over four years to maintain the Human Papillomavirus (HPV) Vaccination Program Register, which has been established to monitor vaccinations of females meeting certain eligibility criteria, and support the existing ongoing National HPV Vaccination Program. This will help ensure young women receive the full three doses required.

The register will generate reminder letters and overdue reports, and enable individuals to be recalled in the event that booster doses are required in the future. Reminder letters will improve awareness and understanding of the need to complete the HPV vaccine course and for ongoing cervical screening.

Life Saving Drugs Program — funding for Soliris® (eculizumab)

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Health and Ageing 9.9 27.4 30.1 32.9 35.6

The Government has added Soliris® (eculizumab) to the Life Saving Drugs Program for the treatment of paroxysmal nocturnal haemoglobinuria (PNH), a rare blood disorder, at an estimated cost of $135.9 million over five years.

PNH is a rare, progressive and life‑threatening blood disorder that causes premature red blood cell death. Soliris® has been made available to those eligible under approved treatment guidelines.

Further information can be found in the press release of 1 January 2011 issued by the Minister for Health and Ageing.

Life Saving Drugs Program — revised arrangements for efficient funding of Fabrazyme®

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Health and Ageing 1.0 0.8 0.8 0.8 0.8

The Government will implement alternative arrangements for the funding of agalsidase beta (Fabrazyme®) a medicine listed on the Life Saving Drugs Program (LSDP). The new arrangements deliver a lower level of savings than the Mid‑Year Economic and Fiscal Outlook 2010‑11 measure titled Life Saving Drugs Program — changes to listing for Fabrazyme®, and have been negotiated and agreed with the drug sponsor.

The cost of Fabrazyme® to the Government will be reduced and Fabrazyme® will no longer be subsidised for patients newly diagnosed with Fabry disease. New patients will instead have access to subsidised agalsidase alfa (Replagal®).

These arrangements align with a review and recommendation by the Pharmaceutical Benefits Advisory Committee of the comparative efficacy and safety of Replagal® and Fabrazyme®.

Both Fabrazyme® and Replagal® have been listed on the LSDP since 2004.

As the new arrangements deliver a lower level of savings than the 2010‑11 MYEFO measure, they have a cost to the budget of $4.2 million over five years, including $1.0 million in 2010‑11.

Maintaining seasonal and pandemic influenza surveillance

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Health and Ageing 1.0 1.0 1.0 1.0

The Government will provide $4.1 million over four years to continue, on an ongoing basis, the Australian Government's program of national influenza surveillance systems established in response to pandemic (H1N1) 2009. The program was announced in the Mid‑Year Economic and Fiscal Outlook 2009‑10 measure Swine flu (H1N1 influenza virus) pandemic response.

This includes monitoring of influenza‑like illnesses in hospitals and intensive care units, and data collection, to provide early warning of influenza outbreaks.

Medicare Benefits Schedule — enhanced management framework

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Health and Ageing 5.6 5.7

The Government will provide $11.4 million over two years to expand the role of the Medical Services Advisory Committee (MSAC), and to conduct rolling reviews of the quality, safety and fee levels of items listed on the Medicare Benefits Schedule (MBS). This proposal will expand MSAC's capacity and provide for reviews of existing MBS items on a rolling basis. These reviews will consider the clinical quality and appropriateness of MBS items and fees.

MSAC advises the Minister for Health and Ageing on evidence relating to the safety, effectiveness and cost‑effectiveness of new and revised medical technologies and procedures. The advice is used to inform decisions about whether these services should be subsidised through the MBS.

Medicare Benefits Schedule — new and revised listings

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Health and Ageing 3.1 5.5 6.2 6.8
Department of Veterans' Affairs 0.2 0.3 0.4 0.4
Department of Human Services 0.1 0.1 .. 0.1
Medicare Australia 0.1
Total 0.1 3.4 5.9 6.6 7.2

The Government will amend the Medicare Benefits Schedule and Veterans' Benefits for new and revised listings since the Mid‑Year Economic and Fiscal Outlook 2010‑11, at a cost of $23.2 million over five years.

The amendments to the Medicare Benefits Schedule include:

  • revision of ten items to broaden access to Positron Emission Tomography (PET) scans. PET scans aid the diagnosis of a variety of diseases, especially cancer, as well as monitor the progress of tumours;
  • addition of a new test for HIV infected patients who are about to commence or change their schedule of antiretroviral therapy;
  • creation of a new item for Computed Tomography for the Coronary Arteries (CTCA). The new item will allow a more accurate analysis of the coronary arteries, without the use of invasive procedures; and
  • addition of an item to provide delivery of Botox® injections to treat upper limb focal spasticity for juvenile cerebral palsy patients.

Further information will be available in the summary of changes included in the Medicare Benefits Schedule issued by the Department of Health and Ageing when the amendments take effect.

Medicare Benefits Schedule — pathology services

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Health and Ageing ‑64.0 ‑90.5 ‑109.3 ‑142.1

The Government will introduce reforms to funding pathology service items through the Medicare Benefits Schedule to achieve efficiencies while maintaining the sustainability of the pathology sector. The Pathology Funding Agreement sets out an agreed range of Government outlays for the sector over the next five years. Predictable growth in Government outlays will improve sustainability for the sector. These arrangements will provide savings of $419.0 million over the forward estimates, and more than $550.0 million over the life of the five year Agreement.

This measure also includes funding of $7.9 million to support the creating of a more transparent fee mechanism for setting pathology rebates, developing decision support tools for pathology ordering, creating a national framework for genetic testing, projects to examine the demography and capacity of the pathology workforce, and establishment of committees to manage ongoing elements of the Agreement.

Further information can be found in the press release of 11 April 2011 issued by the Minister for Health and Ageing.

Savings from this measure will be redirected to support other Government priorities.

National Bowel Cancer Screening Program — continuation

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Health and Ageing 32.5 34.5 35.3 36.4

The Government will provide $138.7 million over four years to continue the National Bowel Cancer Screening Program. This will provide all Australians aged 50, 55 and 65 years the opportunity to undergo bowel cancer screening using a faecal occult blood test.

This program aims to reduce morbidity and mortality from bowel cancer, and associated treatment costs, through detection and treatment of disease at an early or pre‑cancerous stage. Currently, approximately 80 Australians die each week from this disease and fewer than 40 per cent of bowel cancers are detected early.

National Cord Blood Collection Network — funding to support Cord Blood Banks for people with leukaemia, lymphoma and other life threatening diseases

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Health and Ageing ‑1.5 0.2 0.4 0.4

The Government will reform the funding arrangement for the National Cord Blood Collection Network (AusCord) to enable the periodic upgrade and replacement of equipment, reducing the amount of Commonwealth funding required in 2011‑12 by $1.5 million but with additional funding to be provided annually on an ongoing basis.

AusCord, which is jointly funded by the States and Territories, collects, processes and stores stem cells ready for transplantation to individuals with leukaemia, lymphoma, and other similar life threatening diseases.

The revised arrangements will also support the implementation of new banking and collection arrangements used by AusCord to increase the clinical value of the Australian‑sourced inventory, and reduce dependence on overseas registries and other sources of stem cells such as bone marrow.

National Diabetes Services Scheme — removing inconsistencies in access to needles

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Health and Ageing 0.6 0.7 0.8 0.9

The Government will provide $3.1 million over four years to extend access, from 1 July 2011, to needles and syringes through the National Diabetes Services Scheme (NDSS) for patients with type 2 diabetes who require injectable non‑insulin blood glucose lowering medications, such as Byetta® (exenatide). Byetta® was listed on the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme from 1 August 2010.

Under the current guidelines, access to needles and syringes through the NDSS is restricted to patients with insulin dependent diabetes only.

The NDSS aims to ensure that people with diabetes have timely, reliable and affordable access to products and services that help them effectively self‑manage their condition.

National Health and Hospitals Network — General practice and primary care — coordinated diabetes care — deferral

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Health and Ageing
Department of Veterans' Affairs
Medicare Australia
Total

The Government will defer the implementation of the 2010‑11 Budget measure National Health and Hospitals Network — General practice and primary care — coordinated diabetes care, pending the outcome of a pilot program to trial the proposed design and patient outcomes of the original measure.

This measure will provide savings of $448.4 million over four years from 2010‑11. The savings from this measure were included as a 'decision taken but not yet announced' in the Mid‑Year Economic and Fiscal Outlook 2010‑11.

Further information can be found in the press release of 12 November 2010 issued by the Minister for Health and Ageing.

See also the related expense measure titled Coordinated diabetes care — pilot.

National Health Reform Agreement — change in payment arrangements

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of the Treasury 80.0 40.0 ‑120.0
Department of Health and Ageing
Total 80.0 40.0 ‑120.0

The Government will bring forward $80.0 million from 2011‑12 to 2010‑11 and $120.0 million from 2012‑13 to 2011‑12 for elective surgery and emergency department payments under the National Partnership Agreement on Improving Public Hospital Services, changing these from reward payments to facilitation payments.

The facilitation payments will assist in reducing emergency department waiting times and help ensure elective surgery patients are treated within clinically recommended times.

National Immunisation Program — addition of Prevenar 13®

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Health and Ageing 0.1 0.3
Department of the Treasury ‑0.6 ‑0.8 ‑0.8 ‑0.8
Total 0.1 ‑0.3 ‑0.8 ‑0.8 ‑0.8

The Government will list Prevenar 13® on the National Immunisation Program (NIP), which will provide a saving of $2.5 million over five years. Prevenar 13® provides additional protection against 13 strains of pneumococcal disease, and will replace the existing NIP pneumococcal vaccine, Prevenar®, which protects against seven strains. A three‑dose course of Prevenar 13® will be given at two, four and six months of age; a fourth dose may also be given to medically at risk children at 12 months of age.

This measure supports preventive health by providing the Prevenar 13® vaccine free of charge to eligible consumers through the NIP. Further information can be found in the press release of 25 February 2011 issued by the Minister for Health and Ageing.

See the related expense measure National Immunisation Program — Prevenar 13® Vaccine — catch up program.

National Immunisation Program — listing of Menitorix®

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Health and Ageing 0.1 0.2

The Government will provide $0.3 million for administrative costs associated with listing Menitorix® under the National Immunisation Program (NIP). This vaccine will replace the Haemophilus influenzae type B vaccine and Neisseria meningitidis (meningococcal C) vaccine, which are currently scheduled as individual doses for 12 month olds. This will reduce the total number of injections that need to be administered for up to 280,000 children each year.

This measure supports preventive health by providing the Menitorix® vaccine free of charge to eligible consumers through the NIP. Further information can be found in the press release of 25 February 2011 issued by the Minister for Health and Ageing.

National Immunisation Program — Prevenar 13® vaccine — catch up program

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of the Treasury 29.3 10.4 0.2
Department of Health and Ageing 0.1 0.6 ..
Total 0.1 29.9 10.5 0.2

The Government will provide $40.7 million over four years to fund a catch up program for 12‑35 month olds, providing access free of charge to the Prevenar 13® vaccine through the National Immunisation Program. Prevenar 13® protects against 13 strains of pneumococcal disease, and will replace an existing pneumococcal vaccine, Prevenar®.

A single supplementary dose of Prevenar 13® will be provided to children aged between 12 and 35 months who have completed their primary vaccination course for protection against pneumococcal disease with the Prevenar® vaccine, to ensure these children can also benefit from the improved vaccine. The catch up program will be available for one year, from 1 October 2011 to 30 September 2012.

This complements the listing of Prevenar 13® on the National Immunisation Program. See the related expense measure titled National Immunisation Program — addition of Prevenar 13®.

National Medical Stockpile — strengthening management arrangements

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Health and Ageing 4.3 2.4
Related capital ($m)
Department of Health and Ageing 0.1

The Government will provide $6.7 million over two years to strengthen the inventory planning, logistics and information management systems of the National Medical Stockpile. This includes $1.2 million in 2011‑12 to safely dispose of expired stock.

The National Medical Stockpile was created in 2002 as a strategic reserve of medications and medical equipment to respond to potential mass casualty emergencies or health disasters.

National Mental Health Reform — leadership in mental health reform — continuation

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Health and Ageing

The Government will provide $64.1 million over five years (including $13.4 million in 2015‑16) to continue national evaluation, accountability and reporting mechanisms in mental health. This continues the 2009‑10 Budget measure Leadership in mental health reform — continuation and further efficiency.

This measure will continue to build the national mental health evidence base, strengthen accountability and transparency, lead improvements in service quality and outcomes, and support national peak bodies and stakeholders. The Government will provide $56.8 million over five years (including $11.9 million in 2015‑16) for the continuation of these activities.

The remaining $7.3 million over five years (including $1.5 million in 2015‑16) will be redirected to the budget measure Mental Health — National Reform — establishment of a National Mental Health Commission.

The provision of the $64.1 million over five years (including $13.4 million in 2015‑16) is already included in the forward estimates.

This measure is part of the Government's National Mental Health Reform package.

National Mental Health Reform — Better Access Initiative — rationalisation of allied health treatment sessions

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Human Services ‑0.1 ‑0.2 ‑0.3 ‑0.4
Department of Health and Ageing ‑12.5 ‑26.3 ‑34.6 ‑44.3
Total ‑12.6 ‑26.5 ‑34.9 ‑44.6

The Government will revise the number of allied health treatment services available to patients under the Better Access initiative. Under the new arrangements, patients will be able to access up to six subsidised mental health services through the Medicare Benefits Schedule (MBS). An additional four MBS subsidised mental health services will be available to patients who require additional assistance.

The new arrangements will ensure that the Better Access initiative is more efficient and better targeted by limiting the number of services that patients with mild or moderate mental illness can receive, while patients with advanced mental illness are provided more appropriate treatment through programs such as the Government's Access to Allied Psychological Services program.

This measure will deliver savings of $174.6 million over five years (including $55.9 million in 2015‑16) to be redirected to other mental health priorities. This measure is part of the Government's National Mental Health Reform package.

National Mental Health Reform — Better Access Initiative — rationalisation of GP mental health services

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Veterans' Affairs ‑0.2 ‑0.4 ‑0.4 ‑0.4
Department of Health and Ageing ‑49.9 ‑80.1 ‑85.0 ‑90.5
Total ‑50.1 ‑80.5 ‑85.4 ‑90.9

The Government will introduce a two tiered rebate for Mental Health Treatment Plans delivered by General Practitioners (GPs) through the Better Access to Psychiatrists, Psychologists and General Practitioners (Better Access) initiative to adjust the level of rebate to better reflect the time taken to deliver the service.

The revised rebates are modelled on the current structure for GP consultations, with a standard rebate for services taking between 20 and 39 minutes, and a higher rebate for those services taking 40 minutes or more. The rebates for GP Mental Health Treatment Plans will remain higher for those GPs who have completed Mental Health Skills Training. Rebates for other mental health services provided by GPs will also be amended to reflect the changes in the rebates for Mental Health Treatment Plans.

This measure will deliver savings of $405.9 million over five years (including $98.9 million in 2015‑16), to be redirected to other mental health priorities as part of the Government's National Mental Health Reform package.

National Mental Health Reform — coordinated care and flexible funding for people with severe and persistent mental illness

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Health and Ageing ‑25.4 35.5 69.1 117.6

The Government will provide $549.8 million over five years (including $192.4 million in 2015‑16) to develop a single assessment framework and provide better coordinated care for people with severe and persistent mental illness who have complex care needs.

Care services will be coordinated through Medicare Locals and Non‑Government Organisations. Under this measure, services for people who meet the assessment criteria will be provided, in consultation with the individual and their family, through a tailored multidisciplinary care plan. The 2010‑11 Budget measure National Health and Hospitals Network — Mental health — flexible care packages for patients with severe mental illnesses will be expanded to provide additional services.

The net cost of this measure is $343.8 million over five years (including $146.9 million in 2015‑16), with the remaining costs of $206.1 million over five years (including $45.5 million in 2015‑16) to be met through the consolidation of existing elements of the Mid‑Year Economic and Fiscal Outlook 2010‑11 measure Mental Health — Taking Action to Tackle Suicide — Providing more frontline services and support for those at greater risk of suicide and the 2010‑11 Budget measure National Health and Hospitals Network — Mental health — flexible care packages for patients with severe mental illnesses.

This measure is part of the Government's National Mental Health Reform package.

National Mental Health Reform — Early Psychosis Prevention and Intervention Centre model — further expansion

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of the Treasury 2.2 22.3 44.3 70.2
Department of Health and Ageing 0.7 0.7 0.6 0.6
Total 2.9 23.0 44.9 70.8

The Government will provide $222.4 million over five years (including $80.8 million in 2015‑16) to establish up to 12 additional Early Psychosis Prevention and Intervention Centres (EPPIC) in partnership with states and territories, bringing the total number of centres to up to 16.

EPPICs provide an integrated and comprehensive psychiatric service to help address the needs of people aged 15‑24 with emerging psychotic disorders. Services provided include early intervention and clinical treatment.

This builds on the 2010‑11 Budget measure, National Health and Hospitals Network — Mental health — expanding the Early Psychosis Prevention and Intervention Centre model.

This measure is part of the Government's National Mental Health Reform package.

National Mental Health Reform — establishment of a National Mental Health Commission

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet 3.3 6.8 6.7 6.9
Department of Health and Ageing ‑1.9 ‑4.3 ‑4.3 ‑4.3
Total 1.4 2.6 2.4 2.6
Related capital ($m)
Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet 0.6

The Government will provide $32.0 million over five years (including $7.0 million in 2015‑16) to establish a National Mental Health Commission. The Commission will be established as an Executive Agency within the Prime Minister's portfolio.

The Commission will independently monitor, assess and report on how the system is performing as well as provide advice on mental health policy and programs. Some functions currently performed by the Department of Health and Ageing, including the administering of the Annual National Report Card on Mental Health and Suicide Prevention, will be transferred to the Commission.

The Government will redirect $19.8 million over five years (including $4.5 million in 2015‑16) from the 2009‑10 Budget measure Leadership in mental health reform — continuation and further efficiency ($7.3 million) and from the Mid‑Year Economic and Fiscal Outlook 2010‑11 measure Mental Health — Taking Action to Tackle Suicide — Providing more frontline services and support for those at greater risk of suicide ($12.5 million). The net impact of this measure will be at a cost of $12.2 million over five years (including $2.5 million in 2015‑16).

This measure is part of the Government's National Mental Health Reform package.

National Mental Health Reform — establishment of a single mental health online portal

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Health and Ageing 1.9 2.9 3.0 3.3

The Government will provide $14.4 million over five years (including $3.3 million in 2015‑16) to help establish a single mental health online portal, to enable consumers to more easily identify and access services. The portal will also provide online training and support to General Practitioners, Indigenous health workers and other clinicians delivering mental health services.

The e‑mental health portal will provide consumers with access to a suite of online assistance at a range of treatment levels. Health professionals will have access to information, training and resources that will assist them in delivering treatment and mental health services.

This measure will build on existing initiatives in online services and is part of the Government's National Mental Health Reform package

National Mental Health Reform — expansion of Access to Allied Psychological Services

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Health and Ageing 16.1 31.1 43.7 53.1

The Government will provide $205.9 million over five years (including $61.9 million in 2015‑16) to expand funding for the Access to Allied Psychological Services program. The expansion, through Medicare Locals, will provide services to children and their families, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, and people from hard to reach locations with a particular focus on lower socioeconomic areas. Medicare Locals will coordinate services at a local level by integrating primary care services with other community based support for people with mental illness.

Medicare Locals will also receive funding to employ part‑time child liaison officers, who will liaise with specialised child allied mental health professionals, schools and children's services to improve the quality of care.

This builds on the Mid‑Year Economic and Fiscal Outlook 2010‑11 measure, Mental Health — Taking Action to Tackle Suicide — Providing more frontline services and support for those at greater risk of suicide.

This measure is part of the Government's National Mental Health Reform package.

National Mental Health Reform — expansion of Support for Day to Day Living in the Community program

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Health and Ageing 2.4 4.1 4.2 4.4

The Government will provide an additional $19.3 million over five years (including $4.2 million in 2015‑16) to the existing Support for Day to Day Living in the Community program to support an estimated 3,650 additional people with severe and persistent mental illness per year.

The Support for Day to Day Living in the Community program provides structured activities such as cooking, shopping and social outings where the individual can participate in social rehabilitation and gain independent living skills.

This measure is part of the Government's National Mental Health Reform package.

National Mental Health Reform — expansion of youth mental health

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Health and Ageing 13.5 22.5 34.9 61.4

The Government will provide $197.3 million over five years (including $65.0 million in 2015‑16) to establish 30 new headspace sites, and provide additional funding to existing sites and the headspace National Office.

The headspace program provides community‑based support and assistance to Australians aged 12 to 25 with, or at risk of, mental illness.

This measure builds on the 2010‑11 Budget measure National Health and Hospitals Network — Mental health — more youth friendly services and will bring the total number of headspace sites to 90 to achieve national coverage. When all sites are fully operational, they will provide services to an estimated 72,000 young people per year.

This measure is part of the Government's National Mental Health Reform package.

National Mental Health Reform — health and wellbeing checks for three year olds

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Health and Ageing 1.0 6.6 0.9 1.3
Department of Human Services ..
Total 1.0 6.7 0.9 1.3

The Government will provide $11.0 million over five years (including $1.1 million in 2015‑16), to expand the existing four year old health check to include consideration of emotional wellbeing and development, and to bring forward the check to three years of age.

The program will also fund the establishment of a time limited National Expert Group on childhood mental health to develop and provide advice relating to the three year old health check and training requirements for health providers.

This measure is part of the Government's National Mental Health Reform package.

National Mental Health Reform — National Partnership Agreement on Mental Health(a)

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of the Treasury 21.4 43.5 44.3 45.0
Department of Health and Ageing 0.5 .. .. 0.1
Department of Families, Housing, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs 0.5 .. .. 0.1
Total 22.3 43.6 44.4 45.1
  1. Yearly profiles are indicative distributions only. The specific funding profile will be agreed following negotiations with the States and Territories.

The Government will provide $201.3 million over five years (including $46.0 million in 2015‑16) to provide incentives to states and territories to address major service gaps in their mental health services including accommodation, emergency departments and community‑based crisis support.

A National Partnership agreement will be negotiated with states and territories to improve access and quality of services for people with mental illnesses. The specific funding profile will be settled following these negotiations.

States and territories will be able to access this funding pool through participation in a competitive process. The Government will also seek co‑investments from states and territories to leverage greater investment in mental health..

This measure is part of the Government's National Mental Health Reform package.

National Mental Health Reform — research funding

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Health and Ageing
National Health and Medical Research Council
Total

The Government will provide $26.2 million over five years (including $5.4 million in 2015‑16) through the National Health and Medical Research Council for mental health research priorities. A consultation process managed by the Department of Health and Ageing will establish priorities for mental health research funding.

The research will be coordinated by the National Health and Medical Research Council, which will meet the costs from within its existing resourcing.

This measure is part of the Government's National Mental Health Reform package.

Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme — amendment to the listing of ciprofloxacin for flood affected areas

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Health and Ageing 0.1

The Government amended, for the period January to March 2011, the listing of ciprofloxacin on the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme, at a cost of $73,000 in 2010‑11.

Ciprofloxacin is an antibiotic used to treat severe bacterial infections. This listing was amended in response to the floods in January 2011, to ensure patients received appropriate treatment in any medical setting (as opposed to hospitals only) to treat skin or soft tissue infections associated with exposure to contaminated flood waters.

The temporary amendment to this listing followed advice from the Pharmaceutical Benefits Advisory Committee.

Further information can be found in the press release of 20 January 2011 issued by the Acting Minister for Health and Ageing.

Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme — biological disease‑modifying antirheumatic drugs — amendments to more cost‑effective arrangements

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Health and Ageing nfp nfp nfp nfp nfp
Related revenue ($m)
Department of Health and Ageing nfp nfp nfp nfp nfp

The Government has amended the 2010‑11 Budget measure Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme — biological disease‑modifying antirheumatic drugs — more cost‑effective arrangements, by bringing the start date forward from 1 December 2010 to 1 August 2010, resulting in further savings to the Budget. In line with the 2010‑11 Budget measure, these arrangements will only apply to biological disease‑modifying antirheumatic drugs used in the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis.

Price reductions have been achieved through price agreements negotiated between the Government and the drug manufacturers that allow for offsets to the gross cost of these drugs.

Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme — extension and amendments to listings from 1 March 2011

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Health and Ageing 0.2 0.6 0.6 0.6 0.6
Department of Veterans' Affairs 0.1 0.2 0.2 0.2 0.2
Total 0.3 0.8 0.9 0.9 0.9
Related revenue ($m)
Department of Health and Ageing nfp nfp nfp nfp nfp

The Government has agreed to extend and amend the listings of certain drugs on the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS) and the Repatriation Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (RPBS) from 1 March 2011, at a cost of $3.7 million over five years.

The extension and amendments are:

  • Velcade® (bortezomib) for the treatment of relapsed multiple myeloma, a cancer of the bone marrow. A pricing agreement negotiated between the Government and the drug manufacturer allows for offsets to the gross costs of Velcade®.
  • Stelara® (ustekinumab) for the treatment of chronic plaque psoriasis, a chronic inflamatory disorder that can affect tissues and organs.
  • Pentasa® (mesalazine) for the treatment of Ulcerative Colitis and Crohn's disease, an inflammatory disease of the intestines.

General consumers will pay a $34.20 co‑payment per prescription and concession card holders will pay a $5.60 co‑payment per prescription.

Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme — improving sustainability through enhanced post‑market surveillance

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Health and Ageing 0.2 ‑1.0 ‑2.1 ‑4.0
Department of Veterans' Affairs .. .. .. ..
Total 0.2 ‑1.0 ‑2.1 ‑4.0

The Government will provide $25.8 million over four years to enhance post‑market surveillance of Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS) and Repatriation Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (RPBS) medicine use. This is expected to result in savings of $32.7 million over four years through improved prescribing and utilisation of medicines, and assist in the ongoing sustainability of the PBS and RPBS.

A process will be established to provide evidence‑based advice through research and analysis to inform cost‑effectiveness reviews of medicines and medicine use. Education and feedback will be provided to consumers, medical practitioners, pharmacists and governing bodies on effective prescribing and use of medicines to enhance adherence to clinical guidelines.

Data sets obtained through the Department of Veterans' Affairs' Medicines Advice and Therapeutics Education Services program will also be used to deliver the measure.

This measure is expected to provide net savings of $6.8 million over four years. Savings from this measure will be redirected to support other Government priorities.

Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme — new and extensions to listings from 1 February 2011

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Health and Ageing 21.3 54.0 57.9 58.4 57.7
Department of Veterans' Affairs 0.6 1.9 2.2 2.4 2.4
Department of Human Services 0.7 0.7 0.8 0.8
Medicare Australia 0.3
Total 22.3 56.6 60.8 61.6 60.9
Related revenue ($m)
Department of Health and Ageing nfp nfp nfp nfp nfp

The Government has agreed to a number of new, and extensions to, listings on the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS) and the Repatriation Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (RPBS) from 1 February 2011, at a cost of $262.2 million over five years. This includes funding for administering payments through Medicare Australia.

New listings include:

  • Avodart® (dutasteride), at a cost of $77.1 million over five years, for the treatment of benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) in men. BPH is a non‑cancerous enlargement of the prostate.
  • Vidaza® (azacitidine), at a cost of $124.2 million over five years, for the treatment of myelodysplastic syndromes (MDS). MDS is a group of blood disorders where the bone marrow is unable to effectively produce one or more types of blood cell (red blood cells, white blood cells and/or platelets). A pricing agreement negotiated between the Government and the drug manufacturer allows for offsets to the gross cost of Vidaza®.
  • The addition of a 60mg vial size for Herceptin® (trastuzumab). The 60mg vial will reduce the wastage of Herceptin® enabling prescribers to more closely match the total volume of the product to the required dose for each patient. This PBS listing will generate savings of $42.5 million over five years from 1 February 2011.

Extensions to listings include:

  • A maximum 12 week course of Nicorette®, Nicabate P® or Nicotinell® patches (nicotine transdermal patches) for eligible patients, at a cost of $54.5 million over five years. Nicotine transdermal patches were previously subsidised through the PBS only for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander patients.
  • An additional 12 week course of Champix® (varenicline) is available to eligible patients, at a cost of $48.9 million over five years. This additional course would be prescribed to patients who successfully stop smoking following an initial 12 week course of Champix® and where a healthcare professional considers a patient requires additional support to remain abstinent. This is in addition to the initial 12 week course of Champix® currently subsidised through the PBS.

General consumers will pay a $34.20 co‑payment per prescription and concession card holders will pay a $5.60 co‑payment per prescription.

Further information can be found in the press release of 9 December 2010 issued by the Minister for Health and Ageing.

Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme — new listing from 1 July 2011

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Health and Ageing 8.3 9.8 9.8 9.0
Department of Human Services 0.1 0.1 0.1 0.1
Department of Veterans' Affairs 0.1 0.1 0.1 0.1
Total 8.5 10.1 10.1 9.2
Related revenue ($m)
Department of Health and Ageing nfp nfp nfp nfp

The Government has agreed to the listing of Xolair® (omalizumab) on the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS) and the Repatriation Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (RPBS) from 1 July 2011, at a cost of $37.9 million over four years. This includes funding for administering payments through Medicare Australia.

Xolair® is an effective add‑on treatment for patients with severe allergic asthma who require periodic hospitalisation because their condition is not adequately controlled by other PBS‑listed medicines. Each patient requires approximately 12 prescriptions per year resulting in an annual cost to the PBS and RPBS of approximately $4,973 per patient.

A pricing agreement negotiated between the Government and the drug manufacturer allows for offsets to the gross cost of Xolair®.

General consumers will pay a $34.20 co‑payment per prescription and concession card holders will pay a $5.60 co‑payment per prescription.

Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme — new listing from 1 May 2011

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Health and Ageing 0.6 4.1 9.1 14.6 19.4
Department of Veterans' Affairs 0.1 0.2 0.3 0.4 0.4
Total 0.6 4.3 9.4 15.0 19.9
Related revenue ($m)
Department of Health and Ageing nfp nfp nfp nfp nfp

The Government has agreed to the listing of Duodopa® (levodopa with carbidopa) on the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS) and the Repatriation Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (RPBS) from 1 May 2011, at a cost of $49.2 million over five years.

Duodopa® is used for the treatment of advanced Parkinson disease. Each patient requires approximately seven prescriptions per year resulting in an annual cost to the PBS and RPBS of approximately $141,231 per patient.

A pricing agreement negotiated between the Government and the drug manufacturer allows for offsets to the gross cost of Duodopa®.

General consumers will pay a $34.20 co‑payment per prescription and concession card holders will pay a $5.60 co‑payment per prescription.

Further information can be found in the press release of 25 February 2011 issued by the Minister for Health and Ageing.

Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme — new listings from 1 April 2011

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Health and Ageing 3.1 15.6 18.4 19.6 21.2
Department of Veterans' Affairs 0.3 0.3 0.3 0.4 0.4
Department of Human Services 0.1 0.1 0.1 0.1
Medicare Australia ..
Total 3.4 16.0 18.9 20.1 21.7
Related revenue ($m)
Department of Health and Ageing nfp nfp nfp nfp nfp

The Government has agreed to a number of new listings on the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS) and the Repatriation Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (RPBS) from 1 April 2011, at a cost of $80.1 million over five years. This includes funding for administering payments through Medicare Australia.

New listings include:

  • Nplate® (romiplostim), at a cost of $73.0 million over five years, for the treatment of chronic idiopathic thrombocytopenic purpura (ITP), a rare blood disorder that leads to extensive bleeding. Each patient requires approximately 12 prescriptions per year resulting in an average annual cost to the PBS and RPBS of approximately $85,322 per splenectomised patient and $65,353 per non‑splenectomised patient. A pricing agreement negotiated between the Government and the drug manufacturer allows for offsets to the gross cost of Nplate®.
  • Galvumet® (vildagliptin with metformin), at a saving of $1.4 million over five years, for the treatment of adults with type 2 diabetes. Galvumet® is a combination product which contains a lower dose of insulin than other available products. Each patient requires approximately 12 prescriptions per year resulting in an annual cost to the PBS and RPBS of approximately $1,019 per patient.
  • Epiduo Gel® (adapalene with benzoyl peroxide), at a cost of $8.4 million over five years, is a topical gel used for the treatment of severe uncontrolled acne. Each patient requires approximately seven prescriptions per year resulting in an annual cost to the PBS and RPBS of approximately $210 per patient.

General consumers will pay a $34.20 co‑payment per prescription and concession card holders will pay a $5.60 co‑payment per prescription.

Further information can be found in the press release of 25 February 2011 issued by the Minister for Health and Ageing.

Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme — new listings from 1 June 2011

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Veterans' Affairs .. ‑0.1 ‑0.1 ‑0.1 ‑0.1
Department of Health and Ageing .. ‑1.2 ‑1.3 ‑1.6 ‑1.8
Total 0.0 ‑1.2 ‑1.4 ‑1.7 ‑1.9

The Government has agreed to a number of new listings on the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS) and the Repatriation Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (RPBS) from 1 June 2011. These medicines will displace other more expensive PBS‑listed medicines, at a saving of $6.2 million over five years.

New listings include:

  • Twynsta® (telmisartan with amlodipine), at a saving of $5.6 million over five years, for the treatment of patients with high blood pressure that is not adequately controlled with either telmisartan or amlodipine when used alone. Each patient requires approximately 12 prescriptions per year resulting in an average annual cost to the PBS and RPBS of approximately $452 per patient.
  • Phenoxymethylpenicillin‑AFT® (phenoxymethylpenicillin), at a saving of $0.6 million over five years, for the treatment of infections in infants and children. Each patient requires approximately one prescription per course resulting in an average cost to the PBS and RPBS of approximately $20 per patient.

General consumers will pay a $34.20 co‑payment per prescription and concession card holders will pay a $5.60 co‑payment per prescription.

Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme — price increases to currently listed medicines

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Health and Ageing 0.5 1.9 1.8 1.8 1.9
Department of Veterans' Affairs .. .. .. .. ..
Total 0.5 1.9 1.8 1.9 1.9

The Government has agreed to price increases for certain medicines listed on the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS) and Repatriation Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (RPBS) from 1 April 2011, at a cost of $7.9 million over five years.

These price increases are for:

  • Avanza SolTabon® (mirtazapine) for the treatment of episodes of major depression; and
  • Ospolot® (sulthiame) for the treatment of epilepsy that has proved resistant to other commonly prescribed anti‑epileptic medicines.

These price increases were recommended by the Pharmaceutical Benefits Pricing Authority (PBPA). The PBPA is an independent non‑statutory body that reviews the price of products supplied under the PBS and vaccines on the National Immunisation Program (NIP).

Further information can be found in the press release of 25 February 2011 issued by the Minister for Health and Ageing.

Primary care — continuation of incentives to improve access to after‑hours care

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Health and Ageing
Medicare Australia
Total

The Government will provide $49.9 million over two years from 2010‑11 to extend incentives to general practices to support after‑hours care. Tier 1 of the Government's Practice Incentives Program After‑Hours Incentive, which had been due to terminate on 1 July 2011, will be extended until 1 July 2013. This funding will support general practices to provide more after‑hours primary health care, and reduce pressure on emergency departments.

Funding for this measure was included as a 'decision taken but not yet announced' in the Mid‑Year Economic and Fiscal Outlook 2010‑11.

Further information can be found in the media release of 1 December 2010 issued by the Minister for Health and Ageing.

Primary Care — redirection of the domestic violence referral points project

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Families, Housing, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs 2.1 2.1 2.1 2.2
Department of Human Services 0.2
Medicare Australia 0.1
Department of Health and Ageing ‑4.8 ‑5.3 ‑5.4 ‑5.5
Total 0.1 ‑2.6 ‑3.2 ‑3.2 ‑3.3

The Government will redirect funding for the domestic violence referral points project to anti‑domestic violence programs in the Families, Housing, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs (FaHCSIA) portfolio.

The Department of Families, Housing, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs will create a new program to improve support services for women in regional, rural and remote communities by training a range of primary health care workers to better recognise and assist victims of domestic violence. Consolidation of the program in the FaHCSIA portfolio will help realise administrative efficiencies.

This measure will provide savings of $12.2 million over five years which will be redirected to support other Government priorities, delivering on the Government's commitment to responsible economic management.

Primary Health Care — Medicare Locals and after hours care

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Health and Ageing 16.7 33.8 ‑3.2 ‑2.3

The Government will provide $45.1 million over four years to bring forward the establishment date for 15 Medicare Locals to 1 January 2012.

This measure also provides for the fast‑tracking of reforms to after hours GP services by funding each Medicare Local to plan and arrange for the provision of after hours services in their region.

Further information can be found in the press release of 11 February 2011 issued by the Prime Minister.

Regional health and aged care — dedicated unit

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Health and Ageing

The Government will establish a dedicated unit within the Department of Health and Ageing to provide advice to the public on regional health and aged care matters. This unit will also provide advice to other Australian Government agencies to ensure that regional health and aged care issues are understood and considered in future policy development.

The cost of this measure will be met from within the existing resources of the Department of Health and Ageing.

This measure delivers on the Government's 'Commitment to Regional Australia' agreement with the Member for Lyne, and the Member for New England.

Rural Health — Medical Specialist Outreach Assistance Program — continuation

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Health and Ageing

The Government will provide $12.0 million over four years to continue funding for the Medical Specialist Outreach Assistance Program.

The Medical Specialist Outreach Assistance Program improves access to specialist health services in rural and remote areas. Under the program, payments are made to visiting specialists for travel and accommodation and other expenses associated with providing outreach services.

Provision for this funding has already been included in the forward estimates.

Specialist Obstetrician Locum Scheme — continuation of funding

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Health and Ageing

The Government will provide $2.0 million in 2011‑12 to continue funding for the Specialist Obstetrician Locum Scheme (SOLS). The SOLS subsidises the wages and travel costs of general practitioner and specialist obstetrician locums working in rural and regional areas and is aimed at increasing access to obstetric services in rural areas. The scheme is administered by the Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists on behalf of the Government.

Provision for this funding has already been included in the forward estimates.

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