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Tuesday, 17 February 1987
Page: 111

(Question No. 4770)

Mr Hodges asked the Minister for Health, upon notice, on 15 October 1986:

(1) Were the views of the National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) sought by him, his Department or the Pharmaceutical Benefits Advisory Committee concerning the effects on the public's health of the 45 commonly prescribed drugs to be deleted from the Pharmaceutical Benefits Prescribers List from 1 November 1986; if so what was the nature of that advice.

(2) Is it normal procedure to seek the advice of the NHMRC before listing or delisting drugs; if not, on how many occasions has the advice of the NHMRC been sought before listing or delisting drugs since 1976.

Dr Blewett —The answer to the honourable member's question is as follows:

(1) No.

(2) The statutory responsibility for the listing and deleting of PBS items rests with the PBAC. Occasionally the PBAC has sought technical advice from the NHMRC. Records indicate that such advice was sought on five occasions regarding four matters since 1976: February 1986-listing of tobramycin eye preparations; August 1985 and December 1984-listing of tetracycline and doxycycline used in treatment of non-specific gonococcal infection; June 1985-penicillin listing, and October 1982-netilmicin and metronidazole listing.