Common SfEE-PIF statement on pricing system

Pharmaceutical pricing goes up in smoke:
The Ministry of Health leaves patients without medicines!


Halandri, 13 June 2019.- The system for the approval of pharmaceutical prices as introduced by an amendment to the draft bill recently voted into Law 4600/2019 (Government Gazette 1508/06.05.2019) is a fair pricing system based on the average of the two lowest prices in the euro area. We expected this new system to address a number of distortions in pricing and create a stable and predictable reference pricing framework, thereby preventing the risk of supply shortages and withdrawal from the Greek market of medicines of recognised therapeutic value.

Much to our surprise however, it turns out that the political leadership of the Ministry of Health, in elaborating the new repricing model, has made interpretative improvisations, thereby predicting different prices of medicinal products from those stipulated by the Law!

The pharmaceutical industry warns that the significant price distortions that arise as a result will be detrimental primarily to patients, depriving them of medicines of high therapeutic value. Thus, if this arbitrary interpretation of the new pricing model continues, the consequences will be devastating, as we repeatedly stressed:

  • It is certain that established and affordable medicinal products will immediately be withdrawn from the Greek market or supply shortages will emerge due to illegal parallel exports.
  • Necessary innovative treatments launched on the market during the past four years will be withdrawn.
  • The introduction of future innovative treatments will become impossible.
  • The total lack of predictability along with overtaxation not only deprive us of any scope for business planning, but will also lead to a fall in employment, as companies will have to further reduce their costs.
  • The investment-unfriendly and unstable environment that is being created leaves no room for attracting investment; on the contrary, it raises serious concerns about the survival of pharmaceutical companies.

In conclusion, we urgently call upon the political leadership of the Ministry of Health to revise its interpretative improvisations and apply re-pricing according to the provisions of the Law and the relevant Ministerial Decision. Otherwise, the industry will have no other choice but to take legal action in order to protect its interests.

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