Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme

The Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS) provides Australians with affordable access to medicines.

It is part of the Australian Government’s broader National Medicines Policy. The aim of the National Medicines Policy is to meet medication and related service needs, so that both optimal health outcomes and economic objectives are achieved. Under the PBS, the government subsidises the cost of medicine for certain medical conditions. To learn more about the PBS, click here.

Pharmaceutical Benefits Advisory Committee

The Pharmaceutical Benefits Advisory Committee (PBAC) is an independent expert body appointed by the Australian Government whose primary role is to recommend new medicines for listing on the PBS. Members include doctors, health professionals, health economists and consumer representatives. The PBAC meets three times a year, usually in March, July and November.

When recommending a medicine for listing, the PBAC take into account the medical conditions for which the medicine was registered for use in Australia, its clinical effectiveness, safety and cost-effectiveness compared with other treatments.[i]The PBAC also take into consideration the impact of the medicine on quality of life for patients.

An agenda will be released ahead of each meeting outlining the medicines which will be considered. As part of the PBAC process, patients, carers, community members, health professionals and patient representative and other organisations are invited to make submissions in relation to the medicines to assist the committee in their considerations.

For more information, including agendas, outcomes and public summary documents, click here.

Looking to make a PBAC submission?

Use this step-by-step PBAC guide to guide your submission.

Lisa Briggs, a passionate advocate who lives with lung cancer, regularly makes submissions to the PBAC. Read her story here.