Healthcare News

$270M for new medicine to benefit Australians with Severe Eczema


The Government has added a life-changing new eczema medicine to the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS). The $270 million in funding to list the medicine will help up to 3,600 Australians over 12 years of age living with severe eczema.

Australians suffering from a severe form of eczema will now have access to a life-changing medicine through the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS) which will provide hope and relief to many young Australians and their families.

From Monday 1 March 2021 the medicine Dupixent® (dupilumab) will be available to Australians over 12 years of age living with severe atopic dermatitis (also referred to as eczema) who are not adequately controlled on topical therapy.

The Government will invest over $270 million in this new PBS medicine listing with more than 3,600 people expected to benefit each year.

Without PBS subsidy people might otherwise pay around $22,800 a year to access this life-changing medicine.

Eczema is a chronic inflammatory skin condition that affects the skin, causing redness, itching and sometimes infections.

Uncontrolled eczema is more than a skin condition and can affect every aspect of life for individuals and their families, including through sleep deprivation, an increased risk of a skin infection, depression and anxiety.

While there is no known cure for eczema, medicines such as Dupixent® can offer relief to people from debilitating symptoms and improve quality of life.

Dupixent® is a new targeted medicine that stops the body’s immune system from overreacting and producing more inflammation than is normal.

Until now, treatment of severe atopic dermatitis has focused on reducing inflammation through the use of intensive topical skin treatments and broad-based systemic immunosuppressant therapies that can have widespread effects on the body.

This listing has been recommended by the independent Pharmaceutical Benefits Advisory Committee.

Since 2013, the Australian Government has approved more than 2,550 new or amended listings on the PBS. This represents an average of around 30 listings or amendments per month – or one each day – at an overall investment by the Government of $12.6 billion.

The Government’s commitment to ensuring that Australians can access affordable medicines, when they need them, remains rock solid

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Based on a city where the mountain meets the sea and where antique houses line the streets, my mind is free to wonder, to wander and to write.


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