Senate debates

Wednesday, 5 March 2014


National Health Amendment (Simplified Price Disclosure) Bill 2013; In Committee

10:18 am

Photo of Nick XenophonNick Xenophon (SA, Independent) Share this | Hansard source

Just in response to that, firstly, the government say that there was a lack of consultation on the part of the previous government in their negotiations with pharmacists. But what I do not understand is that if they say that the process was flawed—that is the allegation made by the government about the previous government—why are they going through with these changes? I do not understand that. I make that as an observation and, if the government want to respond, so be it. The fact that there is an average $30,000 shortfall—and the Pharmacists Guild indicated to me a $149 million shortfall for community pharmacies as a result of this accelerated disclosure—would mean that for many average pharmacies that reduction in income would be in the order of $50,000 per annum.

My question to the government is: has any modelling been done about the potential effects on employment and service delivery of such a significant diminution in income over that much shorter period?


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