The announcement from the medicines partnership of Australia is signalling the continued pressure by the Australian Government to reduce the cost of medicines on the National Budget, through the Pharmaceutical Benefit Scheme.
Saving Aus$ 1.8 Billion over 10 years will involve cost reduction and maintenance on the supply price of medicines by the pharmaceutical industry and by removing some medicines from the PBS. The negative impact will be to reduce the revenue to the pharmacists from PBS (already in serious decline over the last 5 years) and reducing income to the Industry. The positive impact will be that both pharmacists and the pharmaceutical industry will need to look for additional sources of revenue – putting pressure to find other categories of products and services to grow through the pharmacy.
Clearly the Self Medication Industry, working with pharmacy, has a great opportunity to provide for some of that growth. Offering the pharmacist avenues of additional recommendation and revenue, offering the consumer / patient better information and choice for their self medication solutions, and prioritising even more the focus on their consumer focused divisions and Brands of the pharma companies.
The Challenge for the industry in Australia is to approach this opportunity with a new and different mindset – to grow, we will have to create a very different future for how we support the healthcare of our communities through self medication.
Steve Sowerby (XPotential and The OTC Training Academy)
Find out more about the Health Budget: http://medicinespartnership.com.au/author/davidn/
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