Media Releases

Budget 2016: $39 million extra for Pharmac

Wednesday, May 4, 2016 - 00:00
Budget 2016
Health

An extra $39 million will be invested in 2016/17 to enable Pharmac to provide more New Zealanders with access to new medicines, Health Minister Jonathan Coleman says.

“Pharmac’s model for increasing subsidised medicines and treatments for New Zealanders is world class,” Dr Coleman says.

“This funding boost in Budget 2016 – an extra $124 million over four years -will mean that Pharmac can further increase access to new medicines, benefiting more New Zealanders.

“On top of the Government’s extra $39 million investment in Pharmac in 2016/17, $11 million will be injected into Pharmac’s annual budget by DHBs.

“Pharmac’s budget for 2016/17 will be a record $850 million – this means the Government has increased Pharmac’s budget by $200 million since 2008.”

Last year over 70,000 New Zealanders benefited from 41 new and widened access medicines. Around 3.5 million New Zealanders received a funded medicine in 2014/15 – 100,000 more than the previous year.

At any one time, Pharmac has a list of proposals for new medicines and medical devices which medical experts have recommended as a priority for any funds that become available through savings or budget increases.

“Pharmac works within a fixed budget and has to make tough decisions. It looks for the best health gains for the greatest number of New Zealanders,” Dr Coleman says.

“The Government’s extra investment gives Pharmac more options on new medicines it can fund. It’s up to Pharmac to make these decisions.”