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Thursday, 10 May 2007
Page: 177

Mrs Elliot asked the Minister for Families, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs, in writing, on 1 March 2007:

(1)   When was the pharmaceutical allowance for pensioners most recently increased.

(2)   Does he intend to increase the pharmaceutical allowance in the near future to assist pensioners with the shortfall between the allowance and the increasing cost of prescription medication.

Mr Brough (Minister for Families, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs and Minister Assisting the Prime Minister for Indigenous Affairs) —The answer to the honourable member’s question is as follows:

People on low incomes are assisted with the cost of prescription medicines through the payment of Pharmaceutical Allowance in combination the operation of the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme safety net. Pharmaceutical Allowance is indexed in accordance with section 1191 of the Social Security Act 1991, and any changes are announced to customers in Centrelink publications such as News for Seniors.