Medical device sector set to appear at parliamentary inquiry

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The medical device sector will be amongst the first to appear at two days of public hearings for the parliamentary inquiry into approval processes for medicines and medical technologies.

The inquiry, which is chaired by Liberal MP Trent Zimmerman, received over 180 submissions from a range of stakeholders, including patients, patient groups, researchers, clinicians, government agencies, the medical device and biopharmaceutical sectors.

The inquiry terms of reference are very broad and the stakeholder submissions raised a large number of issues.

The Medical Technology Association of Australia (MTAA) will appear this morning as it continues its campaign against the adoption of the diagnosis-related group (DRG) based prosthesis funding model.

The reform has been proposed by private health insurers and is believed to have the support of the Department of Health.

The reform would involve the independent setting of reimbursement amounts based on the 'bundled' prosthesis component of a procedure. 

The MTAA says the change would restrict access to new technologies.

A number of patient representative groups will also appear at today's hearing. Tomorrow's hearing includes representatives of medical device and technology companies, including Medtronic, Biotronik, Edwards Lifesciences, Stryker and BXTAccelyon.