Changes to PBS prescription process

The below information relates to changes to the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS) authority prescription process as of 1 July 2024.

Services Australia has provided the below update regarding the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS) authority prescription process.

From 1 July 2024, Services Australia will no longer accept the original prescriptions. They will only accept details of the proposed PBS prescription (and PDF form where appropriate) when seeking PBS authority approval via the post. They won't record the Authority Approval Number on the prescription or forward approved prescriptions to the patient. Where applicable, please ensure you keep a copy of the written authority application form and provide only copies of pathology results. 

Any original prescriptions Services Australia receives via the post that are written on or after 1 July 2024 will be immediately returned. Services Australia will retain a copy of the prescription for processing.

Once processed, the assessment outcome will be sent via the post. If approved, you will need to endorse the original PBS authority prescription with the PBS Approval Number and PBS item code prior to providing your patient with a completed authority prescription. 

Services Australia is also updating PBS Authority prescription pads, the 'Tick for return to patient' checkbox will be removed. You can continue to use your residual stock as it will still be valid. Changes have also enabled an increase to the number of sheets per prescription pad, from 25 to 50 sheets. This will mean you can reduce the number of pads you will need to order each time.

Having timely access to PBS-subsidised medicines can be critical to patient care. To assist with this:

  • You can submit written PBS Authorities through the Health Professional Online Services (HPOS) Form Upload function.
  • Also, most PBS Authorities can be requested and approved in 'real time' using the Online PBS Authorities system. 

Find out more information about the HPOS Form Upload here

Read more information about the Online PBS authorities here

Access a range of educational resources including simulations, podcast and an infographic on the Online PBS Authorities system via the Health Professional Education Resources website

You can find the most up to date authority application form for each drug, program or condition on the Services Australia website

Find more information here.

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