Medical Benefits Scheme - Transient Elastography (Fibroscan)

Hepatitis Australia has lodged a feedback submission to the Medical Services Advisory Committee - Protocol Advisory Sub-Committee regarding Application 1366, to list transient elastography (commonly referred to as Fibroscan) on the Medical Benefits Scheme.  A copy of our feedback on the Consultation protocol is available for download here >

House of Representatives Committee on Health - Inquiry into hepatitis C in Australia

The most significant and largest investigation into hepatitis C in Australia.  Hepatitis Australia has provided a written submission as well as participating in the Melbourne public hearing.  A copy of  our submission is available to download here >

Pharmaceutical Benefits Advisory Committee (PBAC) - March 2015

Hepatitis Australia lodged a submission to the PBAC meeting held during March. The Committee were considering five treatments for hepatitis C, four of which were new, direct-acting antiviral medications. A copy of our submission can be downloaded here >
Hepatitis Australia also attended the Community Consultation Forum, a new aspect of the PBAC process.

Australian Red Cross Blood Service - blood donation.

Hepatitis Australia has recently provided input into the review of the Australian Red Cross Blood Service (ARCBS) policy on blood donation. The ARCBS is conducting a review of the current of blood donation by people who currently inject drugs and people who have sexual contact with someone who currently injects drugs; both of which are currently excluded from donating blood.

The review includes giving consideration to the deferral for people who no longer inject drug and their sexual contacts which are currently excluded from giving blood.

You can view the letter we provided to the review here >>

Senate Select Committee into Health.

On 25 June 2014, the Senate resolved to establish the Select Committee into Health to inquire into and report on health policy, administration and expenditure and provide a final report to the Senate on 20 June 2016.  Hepatitis Australia has lodged a submission to this inquiry. You can download a copy here >

To find out more about the Senate Select Committee on Health visit the website here >

Pharmaceutical Benefits Advisory Committee (PBAC)

The July 2014 meeting of PBAC considered applications to list two new treatments for hepatitis C, simeprevir and sofosbuvir. Hepatitis Australia lodged a submission in support of the listing of these valuable new medications.  The outcome from the July meeting was that PBAC recommended the listing of simeprevir but not sofosbuvir. 

Hepatitis Australia's submission titled 'Evolving the Treatment of Hepatitis C'  is available here >

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Federal Election 2013

In the lead up to the September 2013 Federal Election Hepatitis Australia approached each of the major political parties asking them to outline their position on viral hepatitis in Australia. to support this Hepatitis Australia developed and advocacy paper titled Viral Hepatitis in Australia: Turning Policy into Action.   The paper proposed ten recommended actions the political parties could adopt to ensure a more effective response to viral hepatitis in Australia.  

Hepatitis Australia received responses from the Australian Labor and Australian Greens parties. This information was made available to the public in the lead up to the election. 

You can download a copy of Viral Hepatitis in Australia: Turning Policy into Action  here. (PDF 668kb)

National School Curriculum - Health and Physical Education (Foundation to Year 10

In April 2013, Hepatitis Australia lodged a submission to the Australian Curriculum, Assessment and reporting Authority (ACARA) providing feedback on the initial draft of the curriculum. Hepatitis Australia's first submission sought the following:

  • the inclusion of blood awareness and blood borne viruses in the national curriculum. 
  • recognition of alcohol as a drug; and  
  • increased focus on disease prevention including sexually transmitted infections

The Curriculum was amended to include the following:

  • 'safe blood practices' being added to the 'Safety' area of learning;
  • the term  'alcohol and other drugs' was adopted throughout the curriculum; and
  • harm minimisation was included as a strategy in relation to drug use. 

In July 2013 Hepatitis Australia submitted further feedback to ACARA.  This proposed there needed to be greater reinforced of safe blood practices within the content descriptions and elaborations for each band (Year groups). This would ensure ongoing education relevant to the age groups and related risk activities.

ACARA has advised Hepatitis Australia that the further feedback will be taken into account with further reinforcement throughout the curriculum.  Hepatitis Australia will review any further version of the National Curriculum.

National Strategies for Hepatitis B and Hepatitis C

Hepatitis Australia has been directly involved in informing each of the National Strategies responding to viral hepatitis.  The Australian Government has recently reviewed the National Strategies and ahead of the Federal Election started developing the strategies for 2014-2016.   This includes the second National Strategy for Hepatitis B and the fourth National Strategy for Hepatitis C.

Page Updated: 26 September 2013