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Health Legislation Amendment (Australian Community Pharmacy Authority) Bill 2005

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2004-2005

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

THE PARLIAMENT OF THE COMMONWEALTH OF AUSTRALIA

 

 

 

 

HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

 

 

 

 

 

 

HEALTH LEGISLATION AMENDMENT (AUSTRALIAN COMMUNITY PHARMACY AUTHORITY) BILL 2005

 

 

 

 

 

EXPLANATORY MEMORANDUM

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

(Circulated by authority of the Minister for Health and Ageing,

the Honourable Tony Abbott MP)



 HEALTH LEGISLATION AMENDMENT (AUSTRALIAN COMMUNITY PHARMACY AUTHORITY) BILL 2005

OUTLINE

The Health Legislation Amendment (Australian Community Pharmacy Authority) Bill 2005 (the Bill) amends the National Health Act 1953 and the Health Legislation Amendment (Podiatric Surgery and Other Matters) Act 2004 in relation to the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS).

The purpose of the amendments to the National Health Act 1953 (the Act) is to extend, until 31 December 2005, the existing arrangements for approving pharmacists to supply PBS medicines.

Section 90 of the Act provides for a pharmacist to be approved to supply PBS medicines at or from particular premises.  Subsections 90(3A), 90(3AA), 90(3AB) and 90(3B) require that applications by pharmacists for approval to supply PBS medicines from particular premises, where those applications relate to the establishment of a new approval or the relocation of an existing approval, must be referred to the Australian Community Pharmacy Authority (the ACPA), and that approval may only be granted where the ACPA has recommended such approval.

Division 4B of Part VII of the Act establishes the ACPA.  The functions of the ACPA are to consider applications by pharmacists to supply PBS medicines, and to make recommendations as to whether or not an application be approved.  Section 99L of the Act, which is part of Division 4B, provides for the Minister to determine the rules subject to which the ACPA is to make its recommendations (the Ministerial Rules).

Division 4B will cease to have effect after 30 June 2005 and the administrative arrangements under section 90 relating to the ACPA (subsections 90(3A), 90(3AA), 90(3AB) and 90(3B)) will also cease to have effect after 30 June 2005.

In accordance with a commitment made in the Third Community Pharmacy Agreement, the Commonwealth Government and the Pharmacy Guild of Australia are currently undertaking a joint review of the Ministerial Rules.  The purpose of the review is to e valuate the net public benefit of the Ministerial Rules in terms of achieving their policy objectives, identify any significant anomalies in their application and administration and report on alternatives to remedy any such deficiencies and anomalies.

While the review is expected to report before 30 June 2005, further time is required to enable the Government to consider and make decisions in relation to the findings and recommendations of the review.

The Government has decided to extend the arrangements relating to the pharmacy location rules and their administration by the ACPA until 31 December 2005 to allow the Government and other stakeholders to give full consideration to the findings and recommendations of the review.

The Bill will amend the Act to provide for the Ministerial Rules and the administration of these rules by the ACPA to remain in effect until the end of 31 December 2005.

The Bill will also make a technical amendment to the Health Legislation Amendment (Podiatric Surgery and Other Matters) Act 2004 to correct a misdescription.

Financial Impact Statement

The Bill provides for the existing pharmacy location rules and their administration by the ACPA to be extended for six months.  It is not expected to have a direct financial impact.



 

HEALTH LEGISLATION AMENDMENT (AUSTRALIAN COMMUNITY PHARMACY AUTHORITY) BILL 2005

 

NOTES ON CLAUSES

 

Clause 1: Short title

This clause specifies the short title of the Act as the Health Legislation Amendment (Australian Community Pharmacy Authority) Act 2005 .

Clause 2: Commencement

This clause sets out the commencement arrangements for provisions of this Act.  Each provision specified in column 1 of the table commences, or is taken to have commenced, in accordance with column 2 of the table.  Any other statement in column 2 has effect according to its terms.

Clause 3: Schedule(s)

This clause provides that each Act that is specified in the Schedule to this Act is amended or repealed as set out in the applicable items in the Schedule.

SCHEDULE 1 - AMENDMENT OF THE HEALTH LEGISLATION AMENDMENT (PODIATRIC SURGERY AND OTHER MATTERS) ACT 2004

Item 1

Item 1 corrects a misdescribed amendment in Item 11 of Schedule 1 to the Health Legislation Amendment (Podiatric Surgery and Other Matters) Act 2004 .  That amendment was intended to include in subsection 90(3C) of the National Health Act 1953 (as described in Item 1) a reference to subsections 90(3AC) and 90(3AD), thus providing for the expiry of those provisions.  Item 11 of Schedule 1 to the Health Legislation Amendment (Podiatric Surgery and Other Matters) Act 2004 contained a grammatical misdescription (by inserting a comma after the reference to (3AB)) in subsection 90(3C) which this amendment corrects.

 

SCHEDULE 1 - AMENDMENT OF THE NATIONAL HEALTH ACT 1953

Item 2

Item 2 amends subsection 90(3C) of the National Health Act 1953 to provide that subsections 90(3A), 90(3AA), 90(3AB) and 90(3B) will continue in force until the end of 31 December 2005 unless sooner repealed.

Subsections 90(3A), 90(3AA), 90(3AB) and 90(3B) require that an application by a pharmacist for approval to supply pharmaceutical benefits in respect of particular premises be referred to the Australian Community Pharmacy Authority (the ACPA), and permits the Secretary to grant approval of such an application only if the ACPA has so recommended.

The exception to this requirement is where the application arises from a change in the ownership of a pharmacy that is to continue to operate from the same premises, and the change resulted from the sale of the pharmacy, the acquisition of a deceased pharmacist’s interest in the business or a change in the constitution of the partnership that owned the business.

Item 3

Item 3 amends subsection 99Y to provide that Division 4B of Part VII of the Act will continue in force until the end of 31 December 2005 unless sooner repealed.  Division 4B contains the provisions relating to the establishment, membership and functions of the ACPA, and the requirement for the Minister to determine the rules with which the ACPA must comply in making its recommendations to the Secretary.