Extra Pharmac funding shot in arm
Budget Day is quickly approaching and the National-led Government has already started to make some announcements about its exciting content.
Alongside a strong focus on the economy, the Budget will also ensure we keep meeting the needs of New Zealand families in key areas like health.
Our most recent announcement will see an extra $39 million invested in Pharmac for 2016/17 and an extra $124 million over the next four years.
This increase in funding will allow the government agency to provide more New Zealanders with access to new and important lifesavings medicines.
It will also provide Pharmac with more options on new medicines it can fund leading to more patients those medicines can help.
Funding of these medicines that help people live longer and better lives is what Pharmac is all about. This extra funding will only continue to help those in need.
In 2014/15 around 3.5 million New Zealanders received a funded medicine – 100,000 more than the previous year.
Pharmac has advised they are currently considering funding around 50 new drugs, vaccines and devices.
One of the drugs Pharmac intends to fund is Opdivo, a drug used to treat advanced melanoma.
A serious illness that affects about 350 people each year, New Zealand currently has the highest rate of melanoma in the world.
Although further work is needed to reduce these numbers, ensuring patients get the right treatment and care is crucial to their recovery.
National is committed to delivering better, sooner, more convenient healthcare.
Last year over 70,000 New Zealanders benefited from 41 new and widened access medicines.
Despite challenges in health including an ageing population and difficult economic times, we’re making each dollar go further and we’re getting great results.
Leading up to May 26 Budget Day, look out for more pre-budget announcements.
While it will be a strong Budget that has at its heart a focus on the economy, the economic and social sides of our agenda are closely linked.
A strong economy means a strong health system.
More information about this and other Budget announcements can be found on my Facebook page www.facebook.com/louiseupstonmp, or on my website www.louiseupston.national.org.nz
Budget Day is quickly approaching.