The reimbursement level for some 110 medicaments of low therapeutic value is expected to be reduced from 35.0% to 15.0% from April 2010.
The high level of healthcare expenditure, at over 11.0% of GDP, and the substantial health deficit are major concerns that have prompted a series of reform programmes and cost containment measures. Tentative limits have been placed on doctors’ prescribing activities, access to doctors is being more closely controlled, while the pharmaceutical industry has been subjected to a series of taxes and other charges.
The current medicines policy is that improved access to innovative medicines will be financed through cost-saving measures on existing medicines, such as cutting the reimbursement rate for products with a low or moderate value rating and delisting products with an insufficient value rating, as well as measures to increase sales of generics. As a result of these measures, pharmaceutical spending is expected to slow in the coming years.
For example, under the Law Project for Financing Social Security (PLFSS – Projet de Loi de Financement de la Sécurité Sociale) for 2010, the reimbursement level for some 110 medicaments of low therapeutic value is expected to be reduced from 35.0% to 15.0% from April 2010. PLFSS is expected to result in savings of 145.0 million euros (US$201.2 million) for the social security system. This new reimbursement level will be added to the current reimbursement levels.
Further reading - An in-depth report on the French pharmaceutical market is available from Espicom: The Pharmaceutical Market: France (published April 2010)