Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS) Approved Suppliers - Archived news updates

Page last updated: 29 June 2020

March 2020
Postponement of the introduction of application fees for pharmacists seeking approval to supply pharmaceutical benefits

The Department of Health recently advised that, commencing 21 April 2020, application fees would be introduced for pharmacists seeking approval to supply pharmaceutical benefits. However, in light of the current exceptional circumstances, the introduction of pharmacy approval application fees has been postponed until early next financial year, with the exact date to be confirmed.

The Department will provide confirmation of the date and fee levels as soon as known.

March 2020
Introduction of application fees for pharmacists seeking approval to supply pharmaceutical benefits

Please note, this advice is to provide notice of the planned introduction of application fees for pharmacists seeking approval to supply pharmaceutical benefits. The introduction date and fee levels detailed below are subject to official endorsement. When the date and fee levels are confirmed, the Department of Health will provide updated advice.

In the 2018-19 Federal Budget, the Australian Government announced that cost recovery application fees would be introduced for pharmacists seeking approval to supply pharmaceutical benefits. The application fees are to cover the cost of the regulatory activity, which includes work undertaken by both the Department of Health and the Australian Community Pharmacy Authority. From 21 April 2020 (to be confirmed), the Department of Health will introduce the application fees.

The fee for applications assessed by the Australian Community Pharmacy Authority is expected to be approximately $5,500. This fee will apply to applications for approval to:

  • establish a new pharmacy to supply pharmaceutical benefits, and
  • relocate an approved pharmacy (with or without change of ownership).

The fee for applications assessed by the Department of Health is expected to be approximately $900. This fee will apply to applications for approval to:

  • change ownership of an approved pharmacy (not involving relocation), and
  • expand or contract the size of an approved pharmacy.

The legislation requires that an application must be accompanied by the application fee; therefore, from 21 April 2020 (to be confirmed), an applicant’s payment details must be provided when one of the above application types is submitted to the Department of Health.

Applications from medical practitioners and hospital authorities seeking approval to supply pharmaceutical benefits will not incur a fee.

If you have any questions about the introduction of application fees for pharmacists seeking approval to supply pharmaceutical benefits, please email details of your enquiry to pbsapprovedsuppliers.

October 2019
PBS Approved Suppliers Portal and new telephone number are now live.

The PBS Approved Suppliers Portal is now live and available for lodging applications for approval to supply pharmaceutical benefits.

Please visit the FAQ web page for user guides and further details about the functions available in the new PBS Approved Suppliers Portal.

Supplementary information about the PBS Approved Suppliers Portal is provided in the September 2019 News Update (refer section below).

Additionally, PBS Approved Suppliers has a new telephone number 1800 316 389 to assist with any queries you may have in relation to the PBS Approved Suppliers Portal or anything PBS Approved Suppliers related. Standard operating hours for the PBS Approved Suppliers number are Monday – Friday, 8:30am – 5pm (ACT Time).

September 2019
Information for pharmacists, medical practitioners and hospital authorities – introduction of the PBS Approved Suppliers Portal on 9 October 2019.

With the introduction of the PBS Approved Suppliers Portal on 9 October 2019, a number of changes to the process for lodging applications and other forms will come into effect.

For further details please see:

FOR PHARMACISTS
Information for pharmacists – introduction of the PBS Approved Suppliers Portal (PDF 524 KB)
Information for pharmacists – introduction of the PBS Approved Suppliers Portal (Word 26 KB)

Information for pharmacists – Changes to pharmacy approval application processes (PDF 558 KB)
Information for pharmacists – Changes to pharmacy approval application processes (Word 26 KB)

FOR MEDICAL PRACTITIONERS
Information for Medical Practitioners – Introduction of the PBS Approved Suppliers Portal (PDF 401 KB)
Information for Medical Practitioners – Introduction of the PBS Approved Suppliers Portal (Word 19 KB)

FOR HOSPITAL AUTHORITIES
Information for Hospital Authorities – Introduction of the PBS Approved Suppliers Portal (PDF 403 KB)
Information for Hospital Authorities – Introduction of the PBS Approved Suppliers Portal (Word 25 KB)

August 2019
Changes to the process for hospital authorities requesting approval for private hospitals to prescribe and/or supply highly specialised drugs (HSDs)

From 1 August 2019, hospital authorities will no longer be required to seek separate approval from the Department of Health’s HSD Program when applying for approval for private hospitals to prescribe and/or supply HSDs.

The process will be integrated into the application form Application for a hospital authority to prescribe and/or supply pharmaceutical benefits and/or highly specialised drugs. This form is to be completed by hospital authorities requesting approval under sections 94 or 100 of the National Health Act 1953.

The key changes to the form are:

  • Advice concerning the need for private hospitals to seek separate approval from the HSD Program has been removed.
  • Question 1 on the revised form now includes an option to select a private hospital seeking to prescribe HSDs only, and the wording has been updated to clearly describe the other types of approval for which this form can be used.
  • The declaration wording has been updated.

The application form is available on the Hospital Authorities page.

June 2019
Delayed introduction of application fees

The Department of Health has been working towards introducing application fees from 1 July 2019 for pharmacists seeking approval to supply PBS medicines. However, as a result of the federal election on 18 May 2019, the introduction of application fees will be delayed.

An update about the timing for introducing the fees will be provided as soon as further details are available.

Contact the Department of Health

For enquires about PBS approval applications or the PBS Approved Suppliers Portal, please email details of your enquiry to [email protected] or call PBS Approved Suppliers on 1800 316 389.

Contact Services Australia (formerly the Department of Human Services)

Service Australia will continue to oversee patient eligibility and PBS claim payments.

In order to set up PBS claiming with Services Australia, download the online claiming and ABN forms below, fill out all details along with the Pharmacy Approval Number issued to you and email to Services Australia at the address on each form.

Service Australia cannot pay for PBS medicines supplied if you have not submitted these forms.