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7.1.4 Repatriation Pharmaceutical Benefits Card (Orange Card)

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Last amended: 18 September 2009

Who is eligible for the RPBC (Orange Card)

    

VEA ?

Section 93M VEA Who is eligible

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Commencing 1 January 2002, an RPBC [glossary:(:]Orange Card[glossary:):] is issued to British Commonwealth and allied veterans and mariners who:

  • have qualifying service from World War I or II,
  • are aged 70 years or over, and
  • have been resident in Australia for 10 years or more.

Note: A person does not need to be continuously present in Australia in order to be residing here. A person holidaying, or working temporarily, overseas does not necessarily cease to reside in Australia while they are away.     

When the RPBC (Orange Card) is used

    

VEA ?

Section 93L VEA Certain veterans and mariners may obtain pharmaceutical benefits

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The RPBC (Orange Card) provides eligibility for pharmaceutical benefits for most conditions in Australia. This card cannot be used for any medical or other health care treatment. If the person has also been issued with a White Card, they should continue to use their White Card when having a prescription dispensed for pharmaceutical items relating to those conditions.

Entitlements under the RPBC (Orange Card)

The range of pharmaceutical items available under the Repatriation Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (RPBS) is much wider than the range available under the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme [glossary:(:]PBS).    

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Legislation Library – Health Schemes and Determinations

RPBS

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  • The RPBC (Orange Card) entitles the person to obtain prescribed medication at the concessional rate per item. When the annual safety net limit is reached, there are no further charges for prescribed items for that calendar year.
  • Based on clinical need and a request from the doctor, Orange Card holders may obtain items not listed in the Schedule of Pharmaceutical Benefits, with prior approval from the DVA.
  • Based on clinical need and a request from the doctor, listed items may also be obtained for a use other than that stipulated in the Schedule, with prior approval from DVA.
  • The Orange Card entitles the holder to receive the veterans supplement under Section 118A VEA. The veterans supplement is a fortnightly payment which helps to offset the cost of prescriptions. Some Orange Card holders may also be eligible for  this supplement  with their disability pension entitlement, or if they also hold a White Card, but this does not mean multiple payments under that section.  In addition, an Orange Card holder who receives income support is not eligible for veterans supplement as an equivalent payment is made with their income support pension or benefit.


The Repatriation Pharmaceutical Benefits Card is orange in colour and entitles its holder to obtain pharmaceuticals under the Repatriation Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme for all their medical conditions. It is for pharmaceuticals only and does not entitle the holder to any form of treatment benefits.

The Repatriation Pharmaceutical Benefits Card is orange in colour and entitles its holder to obtain pharmaceuticals under the Repatriation Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme for all their medical conditions. It is for pharmaceuticals only and does not entitle the holder to any form of treatment benefits.

The Repatriation Health Card - For Specific Conditions (White Card) entitles its holder to treatment of 'accepted' disabilities, ie injuries, illnesses or diseases accepted by the Repatriation Commission as caused by war or other forms of eligible service. A disability pension is also payable depending on the degree of incapacity.

Depending on eligibility, Australian veterans may also be entitled to treatment of:

  • pulmonary tuberculosis (whether war caused or not) ;
  • malignant cancer (neoplasia) (whether war caused or not); and
  • any mental health condition (whether war caused or not);

where DVA has accepted a claim for treatment for those conditions.

Once the application for treatment only is approved by the Repatriation Commission a White Card is issued indicating that the Commission has accepted responsibility for the treatment of these conditions.  No disability pension is payable for conditions that are covered for treatment only.

Treatment, but not disability pension, for any unidentified condition that arises within 15 years of an eligible period of service is available to all veterans, members of the Defence Force, or peacekeepers with an eligible period of service.  The treatment is available once the application is approved by the Repatriation Commission and a White Card is issued. Treatment coverage continues until the condition is diagnosed and a decision is then made as to whether the now identified condition is service related or not.  Disability pension is then paid and treatment continued for those identified conditions accepted as service related.  Treatment ceases for those rejected as service related.

 

 

The Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS) is a scheme established to make pharmaceuticals available to DVA and Centrelink pensioners and beneficiaries at concessional rates.

The Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS) is a scheme established to make pharmaceuticals available to DVA and Centrelink pensioners and beneficiaries at concessional rates.

The veterans supplement was introduced on 20 September 2009 as part of the Government's Secure and Sustainable Pension Reform package. It is a fortnightly payment that replaces pharmaceutical allowance and/or telephone allowance for compensation recipients who are not in receipt of an income support supplement. There are two rates, the veterans supplement low rate and the veterans supplement high rate. The low rate replaces one of the allowances and the high rate replaces both. The low rate is indexed every January to the Consumer Price Index (CPI). The high rate is always twice the amount of the low rate.