New drugs listed on Australian Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme

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Wednesday, February 2, 2005Two new drugs used in the treatment of schizophrenia and bipolar disorder have been added to the Australian Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS), Health Minister Tony Abbott announced today. The new drugs are Risperdal Consta, for the treatment of schizophrenia, and Zyprexa, for the treatment of bipolar one disorder.

The Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme is a programme that provides heavily subsidised prescription drugs to all citizens and residents of Australia. Most necessary medicines are included in the list of medicines covered by the PBS.

The Federal Government through the PBS purchases medication in bulk from drug companies at a pre-agreed price. The consumer then buys the medicine from his/her pharmacist at a subsidised price and the PBS covers the difference between the bulk purchase cost and the consumer price.