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EXCLUSIVE | Ben slams Greg Hunt over codeine price hike

The Health Minister Greg Hunt has called on the ACCC to investigate price hikes to codeine medication.

The cost of some products has more than doubled since codeine became prescription-only in February.

Ben Fordham says he warned this would happen “time and time again”.

It seems Ben has finally ruffled enough feathers.

Mr Hunt tells Ben he will ask the ACCC to investigate, saying there’s no justification for the price hike.

“Following media reports yesterday, the Minister issued instructions for immediate approaches to manufacturers and the Pharmacy Guild seeking their explanation and that they cease this alleged pricing practice.

“The Minister will be writing to the ACCC, asking them to investigate this alleged behaviour.

“There is no reason for the costs of these products to increase.”

Ben says Mr Hunt shouldn’t “shoot the messenger”.

“They’re your changes. You need to own them.

“Stop going ballistic at anyone else.”

Click PLAY for Ben’s editorial

David Heffernan, president of the NSW Pharmacy Guild, says it was an inevitable result of the changes.

“When you take off market variety and leave only a couple of brands, prices go up.

“Please don’t bark at the pharmacists because this isn’t their fault.”

Click PLAY to hear the interview with David Heffernan