15,000 families have had the rug pulled out from under them, as the Labor Government quietly removes a life-changing diabetes insulin from the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme.
Fiasp is an innovative mealtime insulin that improves blood sugar control in diabetes patients at a faster rate than other diabetes medications.
The former Coalition Government listed Fiasp on the PBS in 2019, ensuring affordable access to this fast-acting insulin for diabetes patients.
But now, without any consultation or support for the patients impacted, the Government’s decision to suddenly remove Fiasp from the PBS is sending the price soaring up to $280 per script.
Shadow Minister for Health and Aged Care, Senator the Hon Anne Ruston said, ‘in the middle of a cost of living crisis, it is really disappointing to see the Labor Government making the decision to remove a life-changing drug from the PBS that is being relied upon by thousands of Australians.’
‘They must be transparent with Australian diabetes patients and outline whether they have actually taken any steps to support the commercial viability of Fiasp remaining on the PBS and to find a solution for the 15,000 patients relying on this innovative form of insulin.’
‘The Government must urgently guarantee that they will provide sufficient support to ensure the viability of affordable diabetes medications in Australia,’ Senator Ruston said.
The Federal Member for Fairfax Ted O’Brien was notified of the issue by the mother of a young high school student in his electorate who stands to suffer from the Labor Government’s decision.
“The Albanese Labor Government needs to understand that this callous decision will tear away at the quality of life that this medicine affords over 15,000 people and their families across Australia,” Mr O’Brien said.
“Freya Goldston is a fourteen-year-old, high performing student in my electorate who will tell anybody about the remarkable impact that this medicine has had on her life.”
“Freya’s family will have her prescription go from around $7 to more than $280 at a time when households are already under serious financial pressure.”
“The Labor Government needs to provide an immediate solution to support the 15,000 families who will otherwise need to start making decisions about what household expenses they can cut back on to afford this life-changing medicine.”
The Coalition is proud of our record on affordable medicines, having listed almost 3,000 new or amended medicines on the PBS when we were in Government, but we know that the previous Labor Government had to stop listing new medicines because they couldn’t manage money.
As the cost of living skyrockets under this Labor Government, they must guarantee struggling households that they will continue our strong record on affordable medicines for all Australians.