Medicines Australia launches federal election priorities

Medicines Australia chief executive Dr Brendan Shaw today announced the 2010 federal election priorities for the Australian medicines industry.

Medicines and the 2010 Federal Election: Supporting Australia’s Health urges all political parties to support three key objectives:

  • Provide business certainty for the Australian medicines industry
  • Ensure Australian medicines industry innovation remains internationally competitive
  • Deliver better access, information and opportunities associated with the PBS listing of medicines.

Dr Shaw said all political parties should endorse these objectives which would help ensure that Australians remain healthy and productive, and that one of Australia’s major industries, worth $18 billion a year, can continue to contribute substantially to the economy.

“I call upon all parties to implement the Memorandum of Understanding between the Commonwealth of Australia and Medicines Australia because it delivers savings to taxpayers, cheaper medicines to patients and a better PBS,” Dr Shaw said.

“The MoU will provide industry with business certainty, ensure patients get medicines, and protect Australian jobs.

“Parties must also support innovation and help keep Australia competitive. The Australian medicines industry’s contribution to the national economy is more than $4 billion in exports, 14,000 employed in skilled jobs, and $1 billion in R&D investment.

“But Australia is facing strong competition from other countries. Protecting intellectual property, passing the R&D tax Bill and making Australia a more attractive destination for clinical trials will make this country more competitive.”

Dr Shaw said the third priority for Australia’s medicines industry was the delivery of better consumer access to medicines.

“Australians should not have to wait three years for a new medicine to be listed on the PBS.

“All parties should support an increase in the administrative threshold at which Federal Cabinet is required to approve a new medicine for listing on the PBS.

“Doubling the threshold from $10 million a year to $20 million would halve the number of new medicines that get delayed by red tape. It could wipe 12 months off the time it takes some important new medicines to become available to patients.”

Medicines and the 2010 Federal Election is available at:


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