Health

Restrictions on marketing of infant formula reauthorised

The ACCC has reauthorised an agreement among infant formula manufacturers and importers that prohibits them from advertising and promoting infant formula directly to the public.

The Marketing in Australia of Infant Formula: Manufacturers and Importers Agreement (MAIF Agreement) has been authorised until 31 July 2024 after the ACCC accepted that the MAIF Agreement would continue to ensure important restrictions on the promotion of breastmilk substitutes.

Mosaic Brands pays $630,000 in penalties over COVID-related 'health essentials'

Mosaic Brands Limited, an ASX listed company, has paid penalties totalling $630,000, and admitted that it breached the Australia Consumer Law in its promotion of pandemic-related ‘Health Essential Products’.

Mosaic Brands is the largest speciality fashion retail group in Australia. It owns well-known fashion brands Noni B, Autograph, BeMe, Crossroads, Katies, Millers, Rivers, Rockmans and W.Lane and operates about 1210 stores nationally.

Health funds pay policyholders $500 million less due to COVID-19

Insurers have paid out $500 million less in hospital and extras benefits in 2019-20 compared to the previous year, the latest ACCC annual report into the private health insurance industry has found.

The reduced benefit payout was the result of government-imposed restrictions in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, which limited non-urgent elective surgery and non-urgent extras treatments (including most dental, optical and other health services).

Private health insurance report 2019-20

This report provides an update on key competition and consumer developments and trends in private health insurance between 1 July 2019 and 30 June 2020. It focuses on insurer responses to the COVID-19 pandemic, but also provides an update on ACCC enforcement action and other developments relating to the health sector.

Private and public hospitals to cooperate on COVID-19 in Victoria and Queensland

The ACCC has separately authorised private hospitals in Victoria and in Queensland to cooperate with their state health agencies, public hospitals and each other, as they prepare for and respond to the COVID-19 pandemic.

State governments are seeking to boost the capacity of their health systems during the current health crisis by integrating the operations of public and private hospitals.

Private health insurance report 2018-19

This report analyses key competition and consumer developments and trends in the private health insurance industry between 1 July 2018 and 30 June 2019, including ACCC enforcement and other actions relating to the health sector.

HealthEngine in court for allegedly misusing patient data and manipulating reviews

The ACCC has instituted proceedings in the Federal Court against online health booking platform HealthEngine Pty Ltd (HealthEngine) for misleading and deceptive conduct relating to the sharing of consumer information with insurance brokers and the publishing of patient reviews and ratings.

The ACCC claims that between 31 March 2015 to 1 March 2018, HealthEngine manipulated the patient reviews it published, and misrepresented to consumers why HealthEngine did not publish a rating for some health practices.

GSK and Novartis misled consumers with Voltaren Osteo Gel claims

The Federal Court has accepted admissions by GlaxoSmithKline Consumer Healthcare Australia Pty Ltd (GSK) and Novartis Consumer Health Australasia Pty Ltd (Novartis) that they breached the Australian Consumer Law by making false or misleading representations in the marketing of Voltaren Osteo Gel and Voltaren Emulgel pain relief products.

GSK and Novartis admitted that from January 2012 to March 2017,  they marketed Osteo Gel as being specifically formulated and more effective than Emulgel in treating osteoarthritis related pain and inflammation.