Eosinophilic asthma

The PBS subsidises mepolizumab for patients with uncontrolled severe eosinophilic asthma.

Treatment with mepolizumab can be subsidised through the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS) under section 100 of the National Health Act 1953 for patients with uncontrolled severe eosinophilic asthma.

Section 100 arrangements

This item is available to a patient attending:

  • an approved private hospital
  • a public participating hospital, or
  • a public hospital

and is either a

  • day admitted patient
  • non-admitted patient, or
  • patient on discharge

This item is not available as a PBS benefit for hospital in-patients. You must include the hospital provider number on the application form.

Patient eligibility

Patients must meet the relevant criteria in the restrictions and be eligible for the PBS.

The Schedule of Pharmaceutical Benefits on the PBS website outlines restrictions for prescribing mepolizumab and omalizumab.

Toxicity and severity descriptors

To ensure patients' eligibility can be fully assessed, details of toxicity experienced from the required prior therapies must be provided in the application, in accordance with the severe asthma toxicity criteria and severity descriptors.

Applications

All applications must be made by a respiratory physician, clinical immunologist, allergist or general physician experienced in managing patients with severe asthma.

The patient must be under the care of the same physician for at least 12 months.

Initial treatment

Make all initial applications for authority approval to prescribe mepolizumab for the treatment of uncontrolled severe eosinophilic asthma in writing and:

All applications must include a completed:

A completed Asthma Control Questionnaire 5-item (ACQ-5) calculation sheet must be submitted with the application. This sheet is available from GlaxoSmithKline Medical Information.

Authority prescription forms should be requested for 7 repeats to provide an initial course of mepolizumab sufficient for 32 weeks of therapy.

If the requirement for treatment with optimised asthma therapy cannot be met because of contraindications and/or intolerances of a severity needing permanent treatment withdrawal, details of the contraindication and/or intolerance must be provided in the application.

Grandfather treatment

For patients starting initial PBS subsidised treatment with mepolizumab, and who started non-PBS subsidised treatment before 1 January 2017, lodge a Severe eosinophilic asthma Initial grandfather PBS authority application form (PB196).

Continuing treatment

Make all applications for continuing authority approval to prescribe mepolizumab for the treatment of uncontrolled severe eosinophilic asthma in writing and:

All applications must include a completed:

A completed ACQ-5 calculation sheet must be submitted with the application. This sheet is available from GlaxoSmithKline Medical Information.

Further information

For more information call the PBS Complex Drugs Programs enquiry line.

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Page last updated: 3 July 2017

This information was printed Saturday 22 July 2017 from humanservices.gov.au/health-professionals/enablers/eosinophilic-asthma It may not include all of the relevant information on this topic. Please consider any relevant site notices at humanservices.gov.au/siteinformation when using this material.