Boston, MA -- (SBWIRE) -- 03/03/2014 -- The Polish national health insurer has updated its reimbursement list, with a mix of positive and negative developments. Generic drugmakers are expected to feel further pricing pressures in 2014, while multinational drugmakers will welcome the decision to improve access to innovative therapies for cancer patients. With among the lowest drug prices in Europe, we expect patented drugs to outperform over the short-term as cost savings from generic drugs are passed onto funding expensive medicines.
Headline Expenditure Projections
- Pharmaceuticals: PLN32.39bn (US10.18bn) in 2013 to PLN33.46bn (US$10.00bn) in 2014; 3.30% in local currency terms and -1.8% in US dollar terms.
- Healthcare: PLN110.88bn (US$34.85bn) in 2013 to PLN112.68bn (US$33.67bn) in 2014; +1.6% in local currency terms and -3.4% in US dollar terms.
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Poland has a RRR score of 61.5 out of 100, making it the second most attractive pharmaceutical market in Central and Eastern Europe.
Key Trends And Developments
The Polish national health insurer (NFZ) has updated its reimbursement list at the start of the year, in line with its policy of reviewing the list every two months. The updated list added 114 new pharmaceutical products that would be partially or fully reimbursed by the national health insurer. At the same time, the NFZ has trimmed the list of older and outdated medicines, thereby freeing up funding for newer, more effective drugs. Some 297 drugs have been removed, although pharmaceutical manufacturers indicated earlier in the year that they would not submit drugs for consideration as the price set by the NFZ was unprofitable.
Data released from the National Health Fund (NFZ) highlights the inherent inefficiency of the healthinsurance system in Poland. Of the 16mn people covered by the mandatory state health insurance scheme, almost 30% do not pay any premiums into the system. Among those entitled to free healthcare include the unemployed, pensioners, clergymen and small farmers. Funding for those entitled to free healthcare has tended to come from the national healthcare budget, but the entire system has been on the stretching point for the past three years as Poland's unemployment rate has since risen from its lowest in 2008 (6.8%) to 10.7% owing to the impact of the Eurozone crisis and the economic slowdown in Germany. As Poland's health insurance scheme is primarily funded through employer and employee contributions, this has meant that healthcare financing has faced the prospect of large deficits, and as a result, the Polish government introduced spending cuts and passed on the cost of healthcare to citizens by introducing service fees and copayments.
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