Medical and Disability Aids and Equipment Pricing

Medical and Disability Aids and Equipment Pricing

  • Final Report
  • Draft Report
  • Issues Paper
  • Project Information

The QCA published its Final Report on Price Disparities for Disability Aids and Equipment on 14 March 2014.

The QCA identified significant price differences for aids and equipment both within Australia and between Australia and overseas internet sources.  A material portion of the difference in Australian and overseas prices can be explained by the high cost economic environment in Australia and higher costs associated with serving a smaller market.

We found that price disparities are not due to any single issue and conditions are unlikely to exist for the sustained use of market power to significantly increase prices.

The Report makes recommendations to State Government to improve government programs, encourage greater competition and put downward pressure on prices.

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The QCA released the Draft Report on the Medical and Disability Aids and Equipment Price Disparities Review on 25 November 2013. The report examines prices for a broad sample of disability aids and equipment products. The preliminary findings confirm that retail prices for many disability aids and equipment products are higher in Australia than overseas.

We found that price disparities are not due to any single issue. The report examines the reasons for the price disparities and provides some draft recommendations for the Government to address the negative impacts of any price disparities.

We received nine submissions in response to the Draft Report.

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We published an issues paper on 26 August 2013 to gather information and provide stakeholders with an opportunity to share their views on price disparities and their causes. 

Stakeholders were not limited to commenting on the specific questions and were encouraged to provide additional comments or analyses relevant to the Direction. 

31 submissions were received from a wide range of interested parties. 

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The demand for disability aids and equipment is expected to increase with the introduction of the National Disability Insurance Scheme and as the population ages. The cost of disability aids and equipment will consume an increasing portion of both household and government budgets. 

The Queensland Government is concerned about price disparities for disability aids and equipment between Queensland and overseas, and has directed the QCA to investigate:

  1. price disparities in the cost of medical and disability aids and equipment sold in Australia, and particularly in Queensland, and the cost of medical and disability aids and equipment sold overseas
  2. the causes of any price disparities identified, including regulatory barriers, price discrimination and market power of participants in the market
  3. actions that could be taken by the government to address any price disparities identified.
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  • July 2013
  • August 2013
  • November 2013
  • March 2014
Project Timeline

Minister's Direction

This project is complete

In July 2013, the Queensland Government asked the QCA to investigate the pricing of medical and disability aids and equipment in Queensland.

 

Project Timeline

Issues Paper

This project is complete

Issues paper due for release and consultation.

Project Timeline

Draft Report

This project is complete

Draft report due for release.

Project Timeline

Final Report

This project is complete

Final report due to Government.

Report & Papers

Issues Paper – Submissions