HEALTHCARE: The new PBS cancer listings will start on Friday.
HEALTHCARE: The new PBS cancer listings will start on Friday. NHS

Four types of cancer medicines to be made much cheaper

FOUR cancer treatments will be added to the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme.

The new PBS cancer listings will start on Friday in the Gladstone Region, allowing eligible patients access to the medicines at heavily discounted rates.

The medicines are Venclexta (venetoclax), Combination therapy Opdivo (nivolumab) and Yervoy (ipilimumab), Keytruda (pembrolizumab) and Lenvima (lenvatinib).

Health Minister Greg Hunt said patients would be able to access them for $40.30 per script or $6.50 with a concession card.

"Every medicine was recommended to be added to the PBS by the independent expert Pharmaceutical Benefits Advisory Committee,” Mr Hunt said.

"By law the Federal Government cannot list a new medicine without a positive recommendation from the PBAC.”

Member for Flynn Ken O'Dowd said nationally almost 1800 patients with leukaemia, advanced kidney cancer, bladder cancer and liver cancer were expected to benefit from the new listings.

According to the Cancer Council's most recent report for Central Queensland, there are 1285 new cancers diagnosed each year on average and 407 deaths due to cancer.