The federal Liberals have flagged a revamped Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme, which they say would help an estimated 38,000 Tasmanians save up to $80 per year on prescription medication.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison will announce the proposed $308 million changes, to affect more than 1.4 million Australians with chronic health issues, at Agfest today.
The Liberals are pledging to make drugs listed via the PBS, which facilitates the provision of subsidised prescription medication, more accessible to Australians.
This would be achieved through reducing the PBS safety net threshold by 12 scripts per year for a person or family with a concession card, saving them roughly $80 a year; and reducing it by the equivalent of two scripts for non-concession card holders, saving them roughly $70 a year.
Through the PBS, Australian concession card holders currently access medicines for $6.50 per script while general patients access them for $40.30.
There's been a safety net on the PBS since 1986, which has increased each year. This would be the first time it would decrease.
"Families who require multiple medicines per month and pensioners with multiple chronic conditions will get the most benefit," Mr Morrison said of the policy.
"Our strong economic management means we are providing Australian patients with access to life-saving and life-changing medicines quicker than ever before."
Mr Morrison is also set to announce a raft of proposed agriculture, forestry and fisheries initiatives for the nation.
Our strong economic management means we are providing Australian patients with access to life-saving and life-changing medicines quicker than ever before.Scott Morrison
Among these will be a new 2030 Protected Horticulture Strategy to increase global export opportunities for food and fibre - a policy the Liberals believe would be of particular benefit to Tasmania due to the strength of its horticultural industries.
Also to be announced are $2 million in concessional loans for new farmers to assist them in buying a majority or total share of their farms, as well as $500 million in new concessional loans for the forest industry.
A further $10 million will be pledged to combat pests and weeds in communities hit hard by drought.