Tables 1–3 show the top 10 subsidised drugs for the year July 2014 – June 2015. The figures are based on PBS and RPBS prescriptions from the date of supply, and do not include private prescriptions or prescriptions under the co-payment.

Table 1 - Top 10 drugs by DDD/1000 pop/day *

DrugDDD/1000 pop/day
1. atorvastatin54.65
2. rosuvastatin39.47
3. paracetamol34.14
4. perindopril33.80
5. amlodipine30.08
6. irbesartan27.33
7. esomeprazole25.27
8. candesartan23.41
9. ramipril21.62
10. telmisartan18.84

Table 2 Top 10 drugs by prescription counts

DrugPrescriptions
1. atorvastatin7 787 189
2. esomeprazole7 170 908
3. rosuvastatin7 070 240
4. paracetamol6 446 680
5. pantoprazole4 489 551
6. perindopril4 015 432
7. metformin3 589 937
8. fluticasone and salmeterol3 147 115
9. irbesartan2 992 442
10. salbutamol2 976 106

Table 3 Top 10 drugs by cost to government

DrugCost to government (A$)DDD/1000 pop/day *Prescriptions
1. adalimumab311 616 3050.57176 062
2. rosuvastatin206 589 09139.477 070 240
3. aflibercept192 839 767
123 123
4. ranibizumab179 612 417
116 311
5. fluticasone and salmeterol175 215 964
3 147 115
6. esomeprazole174 179 98525.277 170 908
7. etanercept164 075 1330.3193 629
8. rituximab156 563 805
46 763
9. insulin glargine142 760 9667.45347 652
10. fingolimod134 752 8700.1958 858

* DDD/thousand population/day is a more useful measure of drug utilisation than prescription counts. It shows how many people in every thousand Australians are taking the standard dose of a drug every day. DDD includes use in combination products. The calcuation is based on ABS 3101.0 – Australian Demographic Statistics for June 2014 (as at December 2014).

 The World Health Organization has not allocated a DDD for this drug.

DDD defined daily dose, PBS Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme, RPBS Repatriation Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme

Source: Department of Health, 15 June 2016. © Commonwealth of Australia