(1) Subject to this section, the Secretary may, upon application by a pharmacist for approval to supply pharmaceutical benefits at particular premises, approve that pharmacist for the purpose of supplying pharmaceutical benefits at those premises.
(2) Where a pharmacist desires to supply pharmaceutical benefits at more than 1 premises, a separate application shall be made in respect of each of the premises and, where approval is granted in respect of 2 or more premises, a separate approval shall be granted in respect of each of the premises.
(3) Subject to this section, where an approved pharmacist desires to supply pharmaceutical benefits at premises other than premises in respect of which approval has been granted, the Secretary may on application by the approved pharmacist, grant approval in respect of those other premises.
(3A) Subject to subsections (3AA) and (3AE), an application under this section must be referred to the Authority.
(3AA) Subsection (3A) does not apply to an application for an approval arising out of a change in the ownership of a pharmacy situated at particular premises if the change results or resulted from:
(a) the sale of the pharmacy; or
(b) the acquisition, following the death of a person who was the owner or one of the owners of the pharmacy, of that person's interest in the business of the pharmacy; or
(c) a change in the constitution of a partnership that owned the pharmacy;
if the pharmacy is to continue to operate at the same premises.
(3AB) In subsections (3AA) and (3AE):
"pharmacy" means a business in the course of the carrying on of which pharmaceutical benefits are supplied.
(3AC) For the purposes of paragraph (3AA)(b), if a person who is the owner or one of the owners of the business of a pharmacy dies, another person will be taken to have acquired the interest of the deceased person only after:
(a) a grant of probate of the will, or letters of administration of the estate, of the owner who has died, by a court of a State or Territory having jurisdiction in relation to the owner; and
(b) the transfer to that other person of that interest.
(3AD) Despite the grant of that probate or those letters of administration being taken to have had effect from the date of death of the owner, any permission to supply pharmaceutical benefits at particular premises that is granted under section 91 in respect of:
(a) a period preceding that grant of probate or those letters of administration; or
(b) a period following that grant of probate or those letters of administration and preceding the subsequent transfer of the business;
(3AE) Subsection (3A) does not apply to an application for an approval if:
(a) the application arises out of an expansion or contraction of particular premises (the original premises ) at which a pharmacy is situated; and
(b) the expanded or contracted premises occupy any of the space occupied by the original premises.
(3AF) However, the Secretary may, at his or her discretion, refer to the Authority an application referred to in subsection (3AE).
(3B) An approval may be granted under this section in respect of an application that has been referred to the Authority under subsection (3A) or (3AF) only if the Authority has recommended the grant of the approval, but the Secretary may refuse to grant an approval even if the grant has been recommended by the Authority.
(3D) The Secretary must not grant approval under this section to a pharmacist in respect of particular premises if the Secretary is satisfied that on or after the day the approval would otherwise be granted:
(a) the pharmacist would be unable to supply pharmaceutical benefits at the premises; or
(b) the premises would not be accessible by members of the public for the purpose of receiving pharmaceutical benefits at times that, in the opinion of the Secretary, are reasonable.
(4) Nothing in this section authorizes the Secretary to grant approval to a pharmacist in respect of premises at which that pharmacist is not permitted, under the law of the State or Territory in which the premises are situated, to carry on business.
(5) Where the Secretary makes a decision granting or rejecting an application made by a pharmacist under this section, the Secretary shall cause to be served on the pharmacist, notice in writing of that decision.
Note: In certain circumstances, the Minister may substitute for a decision of the Secretary rejecting an application for approval, a decision granting the approval (see section 90A).
(5AA) If, under this section, a pharmacist is granted approval to supply pharmaceutical benefits at particular premises, the pharmacist may also supply pharmaceutical benefits from those premises.
(5A) A pharmacist who:
(a) before 18 December 1990, was granted an approval to supply pharmaceutical benefits at or from particular premises; and
(b) supplied pharmaceutical benefits on or before 18 December 1990 from other premises without the Secretary having granted approval under subsection (3) in respect of those other premises;
is to be taken to have been granted in respect of those other premises, or whichever of those premises was the premises from which the pharmacist last supplied pharmaceutical benefits before 18 December 1990, an approval under subsection (3).
(5B) The reference in paragraph (5A)(b) to supplying pharmaceutical benefits includes a reference to supplying drugs and medicinal preparations for which payment was made as if they were pharmaceutical benefits.
(5C) Subsection (5A) does not apply if:
(a) the approval referred to in paragraph (5A)(a) was not in force immediately before the commencement of section 20 of the Health and Community Services Legislation Amendment Bill (No. 2) 1993 ; or
(b) the pharmacist is not permitted, under the law of the State or Territory in which the premises referred to in paragraph (5A)(b) are situated, to carry on business at those premises.
(6) For the purposes of this section, a reference to a pharmacist is taken to include a reference to a person who owns, or is about to own, a business for the supply of pharmaceutical benefits at particular premises.
(7) Subsection (6) does not permit an application to be made under subsection (1) by a beneficiary of a deceased approved pharmacist who is not himself or herself a pharmacist before the interest in the business of the deceased pharmacist is transferred to the beneficiary in the course of the administration of the estate of the deceased pharmacist.
(8) Nothing in this section prevents the approval of more than one pharmacist for the purpose of supplying pharmaceutical benefits at particular premises.