PBS rules flouted for diabetes drugs

Sulfonylureas are being shunned as a third-line treatment of type 2 diabetes in favour of newer drugs that are widely prescribed outside of PBS criteria, according to a review by the Pharmaceutical Benefits Advisory Committee (PBAC).

About 30% of all prescribing of third-line agents for type 2 diabetes is beyond PBS restrictions, according to a draft report released this month.

It shows newer drugs have contributed to a blowout in PBS expenditure on type 2 diabetes medicines, with costs more than tripling from $130 million in 2000 to $500 million in 2013.