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Part 2: Expense Measures (continued)

Health

2018 Gold Coast Commonwealth Games — pre‑event anti‑doping program

Expense ($m)
2015‑16 2016‑17 2017‑18 2018‑19 2019‑20
Australian Sports Anti‑Doping Authority 0.4 1.1 ..

The Government will provide $1.5 million over three years from 2016‑17 to the Australian Sports Anti‑Doping Authority for increased anti‑doping activities prior to the 2018 Gold Coast Commonwealth Games, including pre‑Games testing of both Australian team members and international athletes.

Aged Care Provider Funding — further revision of the Aged Care Funding Instrument

Expense ($m)
2015‑16 2016‑17 2017‑18 2018‑19 2019‑20
Department of Human Services 0.2 1.1 0.1 0.1 0.1
Department of Veterans' Affairs ‑13.5 ‑23.8 ‑31.7 ‑38.8
Department of Health ‑106.6 ‑205.8 ‑307.9 ‑425.2
Total — Expense 0.2 ‑119.0 ‑229.6 ‑339.5 ‑463.8

The Government will achieve efficiencies of $1.2 billion over four years through changes to the scoring matrix of the Aged Care Funding Instrument (ACFI) that determines the level of funding paid to aged care providers. The Government will also reduce indexation of the Complex Health Care component of the ACFI by 50 per cent in 2016‑17 and establish a $53.3 million transitional assistance fund to support providers.

These changes expand on the refinements made through the 2015‑16 MYEFO measure titled Aged Care Provider Fundingrevision to the Aged Care Funding Instrument Complex Health Care Domain. This measure is part of the Government's response to the continued higher than expected growth in ACFI expenditure, which has increased by a further $2.5 billion over the forward estimates since the 2015‑16 MYEFO.

The savings from this measure will be redirected by the Government to fund Health policy priorities.

Aged Care Provider Funding — improving the targeting of the viability supplement for regional aged care facilities

Expense ($m)
2015‑16 2016‑17 2017‑18 2018‑19 2019‑20
Department of Health 12.6 26.1 27.4 29.3
Department of Human Services .. 1.8 0.2 0.2 0.2
Department of Veterans' Affairs 0.7 1.3 1.3 1.2
Total — Expense .. 15.0 27.6 28.9 30.7

The Government will provide $102.3 million over four years from 2016‑17 to target the aged care viability supplement more effectively to areas of greatest need by replacing the current outdated remoteness classification system with the more up to date Modified Monash Model. This will bring the viability supplement into line with other health programs.

The viability supplement was introduced in 1997 to address cost pressures experienced by residential care providers due to isolation and the small size of many rural and remote locations.

Child and Adult Public Dental Scheme

Expense ($m)
2015‑16 2016‑17 2017‑18 2018‑19 2019‑20
Department of Human Services 4.1 ‑14.4 ‑14.6 ‑14.7 ‑14.8
Department of Health ‑46.2 ‑35.9 ‑18.1 137.2
Total — Expense 4.1 ‑60.6 ‑50.5 ‑32.7 122.4
Department of Human Services .. .. .. ..

The Government will reform public dental services by providing $1.7 billion over four years from 2016‑17 for a new Child and Adult Public Dental Scheme (the Scheme) to be delivered by the states and territories (the states) under a National Partnership Agreement (NPA).

All children and adult concession card holders will be eligible for the Scheme and the states will have the flexibility to provide funded services to other groups based on need. Service levels for an individual will not be capped.

The Government will provide 40 per cent of the national efficient price for all dental services provided under the Scheme, with the states providing the remaining 60 per cent. After an initial transition period, growth in Commonwealth Government funding from 2019‑20 will be capped in line with growth in the Consumer Price Index and population.

The cost of the NPA will be offset by terminating the Child Dental Benefits Schedule and the NPA for Adult Public Dental Services from 2016‑17. Some savings from these two programs have already been included in the forward estimates.

Further information can be found in the press release of 23 April 2016 issued by the Minister for Health.

Extend the Alternative Arrangement Transfer to the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme

Expense ($m)
2015‑16 2016‑17 2017‑18 2018‑19 2019‑20
Department of Health ..

The Government will delay the implementation of the 2015‑16 Budget measure Ceasing the Alternative Arrangement Transfer to the Pharmaceutical Benefits Programme — removal of anomaly from 1 January 2016 until 1 July 2016. This will ensure that the Cohealth Pharmacy, which provides pharmacy services in inner Melbourne, can transition to arrangements which introduce equitable patient contributions for Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme medicines resulting in savings of $18,000.

Health Flexible Funds — pausing indexation and achieving efficiencies

Expense ($m)
2015‑16 2016‑17 2017‑18 2018‑19 2019‑20
Department of Health ‑31.9 ‑57.8 ‑92.4

The Government will achieve efficiencies of $182.2 million over three years from 2017‑18 from the Health portfolio Flexible Funds. The savings will be achieved through various methods, including by reducing uncommitted funds and continuing the current pause in the indexation of the funds for a further two years from 2018‑19. Savings will be focussed to reduce the impact on high priority areas.

The savings from this measure will be redirected by the Government to fund Health policy priorities.

Health Star Rating System — continuation

Expense ($m)
2015‑16 2016‑17 2017‑18 2018‑19 2019‑20
Department of Health 1.8 1.9 1.6

The Government will provide $5.3 million over three years from 2016‑17 to contribute to the ongoing implementation of the Health Star Rating System in collaboration with the States and Territories. This funding will contribute to the costs of a public awareness campaign, monitoring and evaluation and support activities.

This measure extends the 2012‑13 Budget measure titled Review of Food Labelling Law and Policy — implementation of recommendations.

Healthier Medicare — enhanced Medicare compliance program

Expense ($m)
2015‑16 2016‑17 2017‑18 2018‑19 2019‑20
Department of Health 12.0 ‑1.0 ‑3.6 ‑6.2
Department of Health 13.0 15.6 18.2 20.8

The Government will achieve efficiencies of $66.2 million over four years from 2016‑17 through enhancements to the Medicare compliance program. Efficiencies will be achieved by introducing an advanced data analytics capability to better target providers who make Medicare claims that are inconsistent with existing rules and introducing changes to improve low rates of debt recovery from providers.

The savings from this measure will be redirected by the Government to fund Health policy priorities.

Healthier Medicare — removing obsolete services from the Medicare Benefits Schedule

Expense ($m)
2015‑16 2016‑17 2017‑18 2018‑19 2019‑20
Department of Human Services .. .. .. ..
Department of Veterans' Affairs .. .. .. ..
Department of Health ‑1.0 ‑1.2 ‑1.3 ‑1.4
Total — Expense ‑1.1 ‑1.2 ‑1.3 ‑1.5

The Government will achieve efficiencies of $5.1 million over four years from 1 July 2016 by implementing the recommendations of the first stage of the Medicare Benefits Schedule (MBS) Review to remove or amend clinically obsolete items from the MBS.

Further information will be available in the summary of changes included in the MBS issued by the Department of Health when the amendments take effect.

The savings from this measure will be redirected by the Government to fund Health policy priorities.

Healthier Medicare — trial of health care homes

Expense ($m)
2015‑16 2016‑17 2017‑18 2018‑19 2019‑20
Department of Health 0.1 5.9 ‑0.4 10.8
Department of Human Services 0.1 2.0 0.7 0.4
Total — Expense 0.3 7.9 0.3 11.2
Department of Human Services 0.1 1.5

The Government will provide $21.3 million over four years from 2015‑16 to trial the Health Care Homes model of coordinated primary health care, which was recommended by the Primary Health Care Advisory Group's Report — Better Outcomes for People with Chronic and Complex Health Conditions.

The trial will support eligible primary care providers to deliver coordinated care, management and support to approximately 65,000 voluntary participants with chronic and complex conditions. Funding will be provided to health care practitioners by redirecting fee for service payments for Chronic Disease Management Medicare items for participating patients.

An evaluation of the impact of the pilot on improving participant health outcomes and reducing avoidable hospitalisations will be considered in 2018.

Further information can be found in the joint press release of 31 March 2016 issued by the Prime Minister and the Minister for Health.

Hepatitis C Settlement Fund — continuation

Expense ($m)
2015‑16 2016‑17 2017‑18 2018‑19 2019‑20
Department of the Treasury 0.2 0.2 0.2 0.2
Department of Health
Total — Expense 0.2 0.2 0.2 0.2

The Government will provide $0.6 million over four years from 2016‑17 for the continuation of the Hepatitis C settlement fund. The fund provides a contribution to out‑of‑court settlement costs for eligible individuals who contracted Hepatitis C as a result of a blood transfusion in Australia between 1985 and 1991.

This measure extends the 2012‑13 Budget measure titled Hepatitis C Litigation Settlement Scheme — continuation.

Home and Community Care Services in Western Australia — continuation

Expense ($m)
2015‑16 2016‑17 2017‑18 2018‑19 2019‑20
Department of Health
Department of the Treasury
Total — Expense

The Government will provide $392.9 million over two years from 1 July 2016 to continue the National Partnership Agreement for Home and Community Care services in Western Australia.

The National Partnership Agreement (NPA) provides funding for entry level community care services that support older people, and younger people with a disability, and their carers to remain living in their own homes and communities.

The extension of the NPA will allow for continued negotiation to transition Western Australia Home and Community Care services to the Commonwealth Home Support Programme, in line with other States and Territories.

Provision for this funding has already been included in the forward estimates.

Improving the Regulation of Therapeutic Goods in Australia

Expense ($m)
2015‑16 2016‑17 2017‑18 2018‑19 2019‑20
Department of Health 7.2 5.3 3.7 3.7
Department of Health ‑0.1 1.7 3.7 3.7
Department of Health 6.2 3.0 0.3

The Government will provide $20.4 million over four years from 2016‑17, including $9.5 million in capital funding, to improve the regulation of therapeutic goods in Australia in response to the Expert Panel Review of Medicines and Medical Devices Regulation. The funding will improve access to therapeutic goods for consumers and introduce more flexible and timely regulatory processes for the therapeutic goods industry.

The ongoing cost of this measure from 2017‑18 will be met by the Therapeutic Goods Administration's cost recovery arrangements.

Life Saving Drugs Program — new and amended listings

Expense ($m)
2015‑16 2016‑17 2017‑18 2018‑19 2019‑20
Department of Health 0.5 2.3 2.7 3.1 3.7

The Government will provide $12.3 million over five years to include nitisinone (Orfadin®) on the Life Saving Drugs Program, for the treatment of hereditary tyrosinemia type 1.

Tyrosinemia is a rare genetic metabolism disorder that affects the ability of the body to break down certain amino acids.

Medicare Benefits Schedule — listing of photography with non‑mydriatic retinal cameras

Expense ($m)
2015‑16 2016‑17 2017‑18 2018‑19 2019‑20
Department of Health 2.9 7.5 10.8 11.8
Department of Human Services .. 0.1 0.2 0.2
Department of Veterans' Affairs .. 0.1 0.1 0.1
Total — Expense 3.0 7.7 11.0 12.1

The Government will provide $33.8 million over four years from 2016‑17 to list a new item on the Medicare Benefits Schedule (MBS) for retinal photography with a non‑mydriatic retinal camera. The listing will benefit communities in rural and remote locations where there is limited access to optometric and ophthalmic services to diagnose Diabetic Retinopathy.

Further information will be available in the summary of changes included in the MBS issued by the Department of Health when the amendment takes effect.

Medicare Benefits Schedule — Magnetic Resonance Imaging of the breast

Expense ($m)
2015‑16 2016‑17 2017‑18 2018‑19 2019‑20
Department of Health 0.5 0.8 0.8 0.8
Department of Human Services .. .. .. ..
Department of Veterans' Affairs .. .. .. ..
Total — Expense 0.5 0.8 0.8 0.8

The Government will provide $3.0 million over four years from 2016‑17 to list two new items on the Medicare Benefits Schedule for diagnostic imaging services. These items will enable earlier, safer and better diagnosis of some breast cancer conditions resulting in improved management and outcomes.

Medicare Benefits Schedule — new and amended listings

Expense ($m)
2015‑16 2016‑17 2017‑18 2018‑19 2019‑20
Department of Human Services .. .. .. ..
Department of Veterans' Affairs ‑0.7 ‑1.0 ‑1.0 ‑0.9
Department of Health ‑8.2 ‑12.3 ‑13.0 ‑14.1
Total — Expense ‑8.9 ‑13.4 ‑14.0 ‑15.1

The Government will achieve efficiencies of $51.4 million over four years from 2016‑17 as a result of changes to the Medicare Benefits Schedule (MBS) and Veterans' Benefits for new and amended items which have been listed since the 2015‑16 MYEFO, following recommendations from the Medical Services Advisory Committee and reviews of clinical practice of the MBS.

The amendments to the MBS include:

  • the consolidation of 57 skin service items;
  • streamlining existing skin patch testing items and adding new items to test for a greater number of allergens on one occasion; and
  • restricting the co‑claiming of specific items for the treatment of varicose veins where clinically appropriate.

Further information will be available in the summary of changes included in the MBS issued by the Department of Health when the amendments take effect.

Medicare Benefits Schedule — pause indexation

Expense ($m)
2015‑16 2016‑17 2017‑18 2018‑19 2019‑20
Department of Human Services ..
Department of Veterans' Affairs ‑9.3 ‑18.2
Department of Health ‑292.2 ‑605.6
Total — Expense ‑301.5 ‑623.8

The Government will achieve efficiencies of $925.3 million over two years from 1 July 2018 by extending the pause on indexation of Medicare Benefits Schedule fees for all services provided by general practitioners, medical specialists, allied health and other health practitioners until 30 June 2020.

The savings from this measure will be redirected by the Government to fund Health policy priorities.

Medicare Benefits Schedule — support for rural and remote registrars

Expense ($m)
2015‑16 2016‑17 2017‑18 2018‑19 2019‑20
Department of Health

The Government will provide $8.0 million over four years from 1 November 2016 to enable general practice registrars training on the Australian College of Rural and Remote Medicine Independent Pathway to claim a higher level of Medicare benefit rebate for the services they provide while training.

The cost of this measure will be met from within the existing resources of the Department of Health.

Mosquito Control and Cross Border Liaison in the Torres Strait Protected Zone — continuation

Expense ($m)
2015‑16 2016‑17 2017‑18 2018‑19 2019‑20
Department of Health
Department of the Treasury
Total — Expense

The Government will provide $3.0 million over three years from 2017‑18 to continue funding for exotic mosquito control in the Torres Strait, with a focus on preventing the establishment of the Asian Tiger mosquito in transport hubs, particularly Horn and Thursday Islands.

The funding will also enable effective two‑way information and data sharing with Papua New Guinea in regard to communicable diseases and other health issues which may arise from cross border movements in the Torres Strait Protected Zone.

Provision for this funding has already been included in the forward estimates.

My Aged Care — consumer access

Expense ($m)
2015‑16 2016‑17 2017‑18 2018‑19 2019‑20
Department of Health 29.6 30.9 35.5 40.5

The Government will provide $136.6 million over four years from 2016‑17 to support the operation of the My Aged Care contact centre. The funding will assist the contact centre to meet the significant increase in demand for assistance from customers interacting with the aged care system.

National Cancer Screening Register

Expense ($m)
2015‑16 2016‑17 2017‑18 2018‑19 2019‑20
Department of Health 8.4 9.6 11.9

The Government will provide $178.3 million over five years from 2015‑16 to develop a National Cancer Screening Register to replace current State and Territory registers for the National Cervical Screening Program and the current register for the National Bowel Cancer Screening Program.

Funding of $148.4 million for this measure has already been provided for by the Government.

This measure builds on the 2014‑15 Budget measure titled Full implementation of National Bowel Cancer Screening Programme and the 2015‑16 Budget measure titled National Cervical Screening Programme — reform.

See also the related expense measure titled Operational Costs for Cardiac and Breast Devices Registries.

National Coronial Information System — continuation

Expense ($m)
2015‑16 2016‑17 2017‑18 2018‑19 2019‑20
Department of the Treasury 0.4 0.4 0.4 0.4 0.4
Department of Health ‑0.4 ‑0.4 ‑0.4 ‑0.4 ‑0.4
Total — Expense

The Commonwealth will provide $2.0 million over five years from 2015‑16 to Victoria to continue the National Coronial Information System which provides a single source of nationally consistent coronial data. This Commonwealth contribution will support the administration, maintenance and improvement of the database.

The cost of this measure will be met from within the existing resources of the Department of Health.

National Immunisation Program — new and amended listings

Expense ($m)
2015‑16 2016‑17 2017‑18 2018‑19 2019‑20
Department of Health

The Government will list FluQuadri® as an alternative vaccine for seasonal influenza on the National Immunisation Program (NIP) from 6 May 2016. The Government will also amend the existing listing for Cervarix®, a vaccine for the prevention of cervical cancer. These changes will have no financial impact, as both vaccines are alternatives to vaccines already listed on the NIP.

National Partnership Agreement — Management of Torres Strait‑Papua New Guinea Cross‑Border Health Issues — extension

Expense ($m)
2015‑16 2016‑17 2017‑18 2018‑19 2019‑20
Department of Health
Department of the Treasury
Total — Expense

The Government will provide $19.0 million over four years from 2016‑17 to extend the National Partnership Agreement on the Management of Torres Strait‑Papua New Guinea Cross‑Border Health Issues.

This funding will continue to support health facilities in the Torres Strait and the broader Queensland health system to provide health services to Papua New Guinea nationals who travel through the Torres Strait Protected Zone.

Funding for this measure has already been provided for by the Government.

National Partnership Agreement on Rheumatic Fever Strategy — extension

Expense ($m)
2015‑16 2016‑17 2017‑18 2018‑19 2019‑20
Department of the Treasury 0.4
Department of Health ‑0.4
Total — Expense

The Government will provide $3.1 million in 2016‑17 to extend the Project Agreements on the Rheumatic Fever Strategy with the Northern Territory, Queensland, Western Australia and South Australia. These Agreements aim to improve detection, monitoring and management of acute rheumatic fever, and the associated condition, rheumatic heart disease.

Provision for $2.7 million of this funding has already been included in the forward estimates.

National Partnership Agreement on Specified Projects — addressing blood borne viruses and sexually transmissible infections

Expense ($m)
2015‑16 2016‑17 2017‑18 2018‑19 2019‑20
Department of the Treasury 1.1 1.1 1.1 1.1
Department of Health ‑1.1 ‑1.1 ‑1.1 ‑1.1
Total — Expense

The Government will provide $4.5 million over four years from 2016‑17 to the Queensland Government to continue funding for primary healthcare staff and healthcare workers to reduce the risks and prevalence of blood borne viruses and sexually transmissible infections on Saibai Island, and to expand current activities to the rest of the Torres Strait region. The funding will be provided through a National Partnership Agreement.

The cost of this measure will be met from within the existing resources of the Department of Health.

Operational Costs for Cardiac and Breast Device Registries

Expense ($m)
2015‑16 2016‑17 2017‑18 2018‑19 2019‑20
Department of Health 2.2
Department of Health .. .. .. ..

The Government will provide $2.2 million in 2016‑17 for the operational costs of the Australian Breast Device Registry and the Cardiac Devices Registry. The Registries will collect data necessary to provide information on the performance of these devices over time.

See also the related expense measure titled National Cancer Screening Register.

Organ and Tissue Donation Review — implementation of recommendations

Expense ($m)
2015‑16 2016‑17 2017‑18 2018‑19 2019‑20
Department of Health
Australian Organ and Tissue Donation and Transplantation Authority
Total — Expense

The Government will provide $0.5 million in 2016‑17 to implement key recommendations of the Review of the Implementation of the National Reform Agenda on Organ and Tissue Donation and Transplantation, including:

  • establishing a new Governance Board to replace the Australian Organ and Tissue Donation and Transplantation Advisory Council;
  • implementing a national communications strategy for the Supporting Leave for Living Donors Program; and
  • reviewing the DonateLife logo and consulting on donor memorials with community organisations and donor families.

The cost of this measure will be met from within the existing resources of the Department of Health and the Australian Organ and Tissue Donation and Transplantation Authority.

Further information can be found in the press release of 2 February 2016 issued by the Minister for Rural Health.

OzFoodNet Program — continuation

Expense ($m)
2015‑16 2016‑17 2017‑18 2018‑19 2019‑20
Department of Health
Department of the Treasury
Total — Expense

The Government will provide $7.1 million over four years from 2016‑17 to continue funding for Australia's national surveillance system for foodborne diseases, in collaboration with the states and territories.

Provision for this funding has already been included in the forward estimates.

Pausing Indexation of the Medicare Levy Surcharge and Private Health Insurance Rebate Thresholds — extension

Expense ($m)
2015‑16 2016‑17 2017‑18 2018‑19 2019‑20
Department of Health

The Government will continue the pause on indexation of the income thresholds for the Medicare Levy Surcharge and Private Health Insurance Rebate for a further three years. This will achieve efficiencies of $744.2 million over three years from 1 July 2018.

Savings for this measure have already been provided for by the Government.

Perinatal Depression Online Support

Expense ($m)
2015‑16 2016‑17 2017‑18 2018‑19 2019‑20
Department of Health

The Government will provide $0.8 million over two years from 2015‑16 to develop online support resources for women who are experiencing, or are at risk of developing, perinatal depression.

The cost of this measure and for the ongoing management of the online support tools will be met from within the existing resources of the Department of Health.

Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme — continued funding for legal action

Expense ($m)
2015‑16 2016‑17 2017‑18 2018‑19 2019‑20
Department of Health nfp nfp nfp nfp nfp

The Government will provide funding to continue legal action to seek compensation for losses incurred by the Government as a result of pharmaceutical companies taking action to delay the listing of generic forms of medicines on the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme.

The expenditure for this measure is not for publication (nfp) to protect the Australian Government's position in potential litigation.

Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme — new and amended listings

Expense ($m)
2015‑16 2016‑17 2017‑18 2018‑19 2019‑20
Department of Health 2.6 4.0 8.8 12.9 16.2
Department of Human Services 0.3 0.2 0.1 .. ..
Department of Veterans' Affairs .. .. .. 0.1 0.1
Total — Expense 2.9 4.2 8.9 13.0 16.3
Department of Health nfp nfp nfp nfp nfp

The Government will provide $45.2 million over five years from 2015‑16 for a number of new and amended listings on the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS) and the Repatriation Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme.

New and amended listings since the 2015‑16 MYEFO include:

  • Four new treatments for Hepatitis C and the establishment of a Chronic Hepatitis C National Registry to track health outcomes from 1 March 2016;
  • Mesalazine (Mezavant®) for the treatment of the bowel condition ulcerative colitis from 1 April 2016;
  • Bendamustine (Ribomustine®) for the treatment of Stage III‑IV non‑Hodgkin lymphoma and Stage III‑IV Mantle Cell Lymphoma from 1 May 2016; and
  • Omalizumab (Xolair®) for the treatment of severe allergic asthma from 1 June 2016.

The costs for some of these medicines are reduced by revenue from rebates negotiated as part of purchase. Details of this revenue is not for publication (nfp) due to commercial sensitivity.

Funding for the listing of treatments for Hepatitis C has already been provided for by the Government.

Further information can be found in the press releases of 20 December 2015 and 1 March 2016 issued by the Minister for Health, or the PBS website (www.pbs.gov.au).

Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme — price amendments

Expense ($m)
2015‑16 2016‑17 2017‑18 2018‑19 2019‑20
Department of Health 0.3 1.3 1.4 1.4 1.5
Department of Veterans' Affairs .. 0.1 0.1 0.1 0.1
Total — Expense 0.3 1.4 1.4 1.5 1.6

The Government will provide $6.2 million over five years from 2015‑16 to amend the prices of certain medicines which are currently listed on the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS) and the Repatriation Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme, as recommended by the Pharmaceutical Benefits Advisory Committee.

Price amendments agreed since the 2015‑16 MYEFO include:

  • Erythromycin for the treatment of infection;
  • Methylphenidate for the treatment of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder; and
  • Fludarabine for the treatment of leukaemia.

Each of these price amendments took effect from 1 April 2016.

These price amendments respond to recommendations of the Pharmaceutical Benefits Advisory Committee.

Further information can be found on the PBS website (www.pbs.gov.au).

Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme — supply of medicines following damage to pharmacy premises

Expense ($m)
2015‑16 2016‑17 2017‑18 2018‑19 2019‑20
Department of Health 0.2 0.2 0.2 0.2

The Government will provide $0.9 million over four years from 2016‑17 to streamline the administrative processes for approved pharmacies which are required to relocate due to damaged premises.

These changes will amend the legislation to ensure that Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS) medicines can only be supplied at alternate pharmacy premises when an approved pharmacy premises is damaged to the extent that the public cannot access those premises. The alternative premises must be in the same locality and only operate for a period of up to six months. The changes will ensure that these temporary pharmacies will receive full PBS supply payments immediately following the damage, rather than from the date of approval.

Private Health Insurance and Prostheses Committees

Expense ($m)
2015‑16 2016‑17 2017‑18 2018‑19 2019‑20
Department of Health 1.4 0.7 0.1

The Government will provide $2.2 million over three years from 1 July 2016 to establish the Private Health Sector Reform Committee to provide advice on the design and implementation of private health insurance reforms, with the aim of reducing the cost and improving the value of private health insurance to consumers.

The Government will also expand the Prostheses List Advisory Committee to include additional expertise to further develop and advise on the implementation of prostheses reform, with the costs of this component to be met from within the existing resources of the Department of Health.

Protecting Australians from Antimicrobial Resistance

Expense ($m)
2015‑16 2016‑17 2017‑18 2018‑19 2019‑20
Department of Health 2.8 2.2 2.2 2.2

The Government will provide $9.4 million over four years from 2016‑17 to improve Australia's capacity to detect, prevent and respond to antimicrobial resistance (AMR). Activities will include:

  • funding the National AMR and Antimicrobial Usage Surveillance System;
  • improving antimicrobial awareness in general practice;
  • developing a website to disseminate information for consumers and professionals; and
  • supporting the work of the Australian Strategic and Technical Advisory Group on AMR.

Public Hospitals — new funding arrangements

Expense ($m)
2015‑16 2016‑17 2017‑18 2018‑19 2019‑20
Department of the Treasury 477.5 932.4 1,441.4
Department of Health
National Health Funding Body ‑0.3 4.4 4.4
Total — Expense 477.3 936.7 1,445.8

The Government will provide up to $2.9 billion over the forward estimates in additional funding to the states and territories (the states) for public hospitals. On 1 April 2016, the Council of Australian Governments (COAG) agreed to retain key features of Activity Based Funding (ABF), including the National Efficient Price (NEP), with the Commonwealth agreeing to fund 45 per cent of the growth in hospital services based on the NEP for three years from 2017‑18. Growth in the Government's contribution will be capped at 6.5 per cent per year over this period.

The Commonwealth will also work with the states to implement reforms to improve the safety and quality of public hospital services and to reduce avoidable hospitalisations for patients. The states will also work with the Government on trials of the Commonwealth's Health Care Homes model of coordinated primary health care for patients with multiple chronic conditions.

As part of the commitment to retain the ABF, the Government will provide $8.5 million over three years from 2017‑18 to continue the operation of the Administrator of the National Health Funding Pool and the National Health Funding Body.

This measure will revise the changes to public hospital funding that were announced in the 2014‑15 Budget measure titled Commonwealth Public Hospitals — change to funding arrangements. The Government will also provide additional funding to Tasmania and the Australian Capital Territory, and to other states on a case by case basis, to ensure that they will receive no less than they would have under the 2014‑15 measure.

Further information can be found in the COAG Communiqué of 1 April 2016.

See also the related measure Healthier Medicare — Trial of Health Care Homes.

Quality Improvement in General Practice — simplification of the Practice Incentives Program

Expense ($m)
2015‑16 2016‑17 2017‑18 2018‑19 2019‑20
Department of Human Services 0.1 7.0 0.4 0.3 0.3
Department of Health ‑0.3 ‑7.6 ‑29.4 3.7 4.3
Total — Expense ‑0.2 ‑0.6 ‑29.0 4.0 4.6

The Government will redesign the Practice Incentives Program (PIP) to introduce a new Quality Improvement Incentive from May 2017 which will provide general practices with increased flexibility to improve the detection and management of a range of chronic conditions in the primary care setting, and to focus on issues specific to their practice. PIP payments for teaching, after hours, rural loading and digital health will continue in their current form.

As a result of redesigning the PIP, the Government will achieve savings of $21.2 million which will contribute to the related expense measure titled Healthier Medicare — Trial of Health Care Homes.

Regulation of Medicinal Cannabis — charging arrangements

Expense ($m)
2015‑16 2016‑17 2017‑18 2018‑19 2019‑20
Department of Health

The Government will introduce legislation to allow charges to be imposed on licences granted under the Narcotic Drugs Act 1976. Any revenue collected will support the licensing scheme for the regulation of cannabis for medicinal and scientific use.

The cost of this measure will be met from within the existing resources of the Department of Health.

This measure builds on the 2015‑16 MYEFO measure titled Regulation of Medicinal Cannabis.

Rural General Practice Grants Program

Expense ($m)
2015‑16 2016‑17 2017‑18 2018‑19 2019‑20
Department of Health ‑2.6 ‑5.2 7.8

The Government will redesign the Rural and Regional Training Infrastructure Grants Program. The redesigned program, to be renamed the Rural General Practice Grants Program, will support the Government's commitment to rural, regional and remote Australians by providing a broader range of infrastructure grants to increase opportunities to teach and train health practitioners in rural, regional and remote areas across Australia.

Existing funding of $20.7 million from the Department of Health will be redirected for this purpose.

Stoma Appliance Scheme — new and amended listings

Expense ($m)
2015‑16 2016‑17 2017‑18 2018‑19 2019‑20
Department of Health .. .. .. 0.1

The Government will provide $0.2 million over four years from 1 July 2016 for changes to the Stoma Appliance Scheme (the Scheme). The changes will include the listing of four new items on the Scheme, amending the product listings of three current items and deleting two items. These changes are based on the recommendations of the Stoma Product Assessment Panel.

Taking More Action to Prevent Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders

Expense ($m)
2015‑16 2016‑17 2017‑18 2018‑19 2019‑20
Department of Health 2.6 2.6 2.6 2.7

The Government will provide $10.5 million over four years from 2016‑17 to reduce the occurrence of Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders (FASD), focusing on prevention of FASD in high risk remote and rural communities. Activities will include establishing a FASD Clinical Network, a FASD diagnostic clinic, a Model of Care for Communities, and expanding the FASD Technical Network.

This measure will aim to improve the diagnosis of FASD in high risk communities and will provide additional education and training for families and health professionals to reduce the instances of FASD in new pregnancies.

This measure builds on initiatives included as part of the National Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders Action Plan which was announced by the former Assistant Minister for Health on 25 June 2014.

Tobacco Plain Packaging Litigation

Expense ($m)
2015‑16 2016‑17 2017‑18 2018‑19 2019‑20
Department of Health nfp

The Government will continue to provide funding to defend challenges to the Tobacco Plain Packaging Act 2011 (the Act). The Act is currently the subject of dispute settlement proceedings involving four countries through the World Trade Organization, and an international legal challenge.

The funding will support work undertaken by the Department of Health, the Attorney‑General's Department and the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade to defend the legislation.

The expenditure for this measure is not for publication (nfp) to protect the Australian Government's position in any litigation.

Vaccine Preventable Diseases Surveillance Program

Expense ($m)
2015‑16 2016‑17 2017‑18 2018‑19 2019‑20
Department of Health
Department of the Treasury
Total — Expense

The Government will provide $2.6 million over three years from 2017‑18 to the States and Territories for the Vaccine Preventable Diseases Surveillance Program. The Program will support surveillance reporting of nationally notifiable vaccine‑preventable diseases and allow national monitoring, analysis and timely reporting of data to provide an evidence base for policy formulation.

Funding for this measure has already been provided for by the Government.