MEDIA RELEASE 5 AUGUST 2019 – The National Pharmaceutical Services Association (NPSA) has used the 2019 WA Pharmacy Forum, which was held last week, to set the record the straight on the true cost and value of the work CSO wholesalers do in ensuring all Australians have equitable access to medicines.
For just 6.5% of total PBS spend, CSO wholesalers uphold a commitment to Australian patients on behalf of the Government to deliver the full range of PBS medicines anywhere in the country and generally within 24 hours.
NPSA Chairman Mark Hooper said that the Forum presented an important opportunity to dispel some of the myths surrounding CSO wholesaling, while helping industry, government and consumer stakeholders better understand the value of the critical and complex function they perform.
“There is still a widely held view in the industry that CSO wholesaling is simply a matter of moving boxes and that doing so costs the Government too much money,” NPSA Chairman Mark Hooper said.
“The reality is that the combined cost of wholesale margins and the CSO accounts for just 6.5% of the total PBS spend and our role in the supply chain goes far beyond a matter of just simply moving boxes.
“CSO wholesalers are responsible for upholding the Government’s commitment to patients of 24-hour delivery anywhere in Australia. We also ensure reliable access to low volume medicines, that are often vital to a patient’s health.”
In order to fulfil this commitment CSO wholesalers must buy, hold, range, pick, pack and deliver all 6,200 PBS products, which requires significant investment in technology and infrastructure – capabilities that underpin Australia’s pharmaceutical supply chain.
“Since 2014, NPSA Members have invested more than $500 million in the supply chain to ensure that Australia’s medicines sector remains among the best in the world for productivity, efficiency and service delivery,” Mr Hooper said.
“We are also the critical business partner for Australian community pharmacies through providing approximately $1.7 billion in working capital, which is support that the industry could not function without.
“Ultimately, as we approach 7CPA negotiations, we want all industry stakeholders to understand the huge value for money we provide Government, the significant efficiencies and support we deliver for pharmacy and what it takes to deliver on our commitment of providing all Australians with access to the full range of PBS medicines and generally within 24 hours.”
The National Pharmaceutical Services Association represents CSO wholesalers Australian Pharmaceutical Industries, National Pharmacies, Sigma Healthcare and Symbion.
Contact: Myles Wallace on 0432 866 094 or firstname.lastname@example.org
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