Friday, 12 February 2010

Cost-containment measures restricting pharmaceutical market growth

Cost-containment policies continue to affect underdeveloped, emerging and mature pharmaceutical markets. In Asia Pacific, for example, the Philippines is expected to announce a second drug-price list in mid February. This would be the second time it has happened in less than one year. Hospital drug price negotiations in Taiwan are increasing drug access but, as a result, some problems have arisen in the pharmaceutical supply chain.

Eastern European pharmaceutical markets are not immune to cost-containment policies. Drug companies in Russia have been forbidden from raising the prices of essential medicines. There are concerns whether this move could make the production of some medicines loss-making. Meanwhile, pharmaceutical producers have delayed their rebates in Romania, a small but growing pharmaceutical market.

In the more mature Western European pharmaceutical markets, pricing & reimbursement policies are generalised, with recent cuts seen in Ireland and Germany. Hospital drug debt levels, particularly common in more Southern European pharmaceutical markets, can also impact pharmaceutical producers. Following the pledge by the European Union to support Greece economically, it remains to be seen how Greek authorities plan to pay off their outstanding hospital drug debts.

Further reading - In-depth reports on the pharmaceutical markets in these countries, including detailed information on pricing & reimbursement, are available from Espicom: Philippines, Taiwan, Russia, Romania, Ireland, Germany and Greece.

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