Overview of the PBS
The Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS) subsidises prescription medicines listed under the Schedule of Pharmaceutical Benefits.
The PBS gives all Australian residents and eligible overseas visitors affordable access to some prescription medicine.
Our role is to administer the PBS. This includes processing claims and paying benefits under the PBS, running the PBS Safety Net, PBS stationery and PBS authority assessment.
We also work on programs related to the PBS that help Aboriginal patients, veterans and stoma patients.
Schedule of Pharmaceutical Benefits
The Schedule of Pharmaceutical Benefits lists the medicines available under the PBS. The schedule can be read and downloaded on the PBS website. The site is updated on the first day of every month to include new and changed listings.
PBS Safety Net
If a patient needs a lot of medicines in a calendar year, the PBS Safety Net can help with the cost of PBS medicines.
You can order PBS stationery products, including PBS prescription pads and PBS Safety Net cards from our PBS stationery order forms webpage.
Online PBS Authorities System
You may need to get approval from us before you prescribe some PBS-subsidised medicines. You can phone us or use the Online PBS Authorities System to apply for authority approval for most PBS items.
You can make a request online 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, through either:
- clinical or prescribing software - where available
- Health Professional Online Services (HPOS).
Remote Area Aboriginal Health Services
The Remote Area Aboriginal Health Services (RAAHS) program allows patients of approved Aboriginal health services (AHS) to get medicines from the AHS for free and without a normal PBS prescription form.
Repatriation Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme
The Repatriation Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (RPBS) ensures veterans and war widows have access to medicines on the PBS as well as medicines on the RPBS. Read about the RPBS on the Department of Veterans' Affairs website.
Stoma Appliance Scheme
The Stoma Appliance Scheme (SAS) Schedule lists stoma-related products. It provides free stoma-related aids and appliances to nearly 45,000 members of stoma associations.
For PBS enquiries and support, contact us.
You can also read PBS education for health professionals.
Page last updated: 4 March 2020
This information was printed 13 May 2021 from https://www.servicesaustralia.gov.au/organisations/health-professionals/subjects/overview-pbs. It may not include all of the relevant information on this topic. Please consider any relevant site notices at https://www.servicesaustralia.gov.au/individuals/site-notices when using this material.