War of words over Grattan Institute PBS report

THE pharmaceutical industry has rejected a Grattan Institute report calling for an independent federal drug-purchasing agency to bring down costs to the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme.

The report blames cosy ties between Medicines Australia and the health department for an anomaly where it says the federal government pays above world prices for PBS drugs and gets worse deals than prices negotiated by the state governments.

It says the government is losing $320 million a year from the erosion of a price-setting policy designed to