Senate debates

Thursday, 29 November 2018

Questions without Notice

Health Care

2:09 pm

Photo of Nigel ScullionNigel Scullion (NT, Country Liberal Party, Minister for Indigenous Affairs) Share this | Hansard source

Being able to manage the economy enables the government to deliver affordable medicines to Australians who need them. This hasn't always been guaranteed. Who could forget the shameful mismanagement of the budget under the former Labor government and, of course, the impact on the PBS? The last Labor government reversed the coalition's policy to list all the medicines approved by the independent PBAC. That included medicines to treat the formulation of blood clots, deep vein thrombosis, severe asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, endometriosis, IVF treatments and schizophrenia. But you don't have to take my word for it. Labor's own budget papers: 'The listing of some medicines would be deferred until fiscal circumstances permit.' And then they outlined the government's new position that all listings with a financial impact will now be instead considered by cabinet. At the time, along with Australia's largest patient organisation, they all joined together to slam that policy. That's what happens when you run out of money. You cannot be providing essential— (Time expired)

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