Australia: New HIV Drug Added to Taxpayer-Subsidized List

On Jan. 1, Australia's Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme added the AIDS drug Atripla (efavirenz, emtricitabine, and tenofovir) to the drugs that are covered for HIV/AIDS patients. The additional cost to the program is expected to be about $15 million (US $13.7 million) over four years. Prescription co-payments are also increasing slightly for all patients, to $5.40 (US $4.93) per prescription for concessional card holders and $33.30 (US $30.39) per prescription for general patients.