EU Ministers To Debate Pharma ‘Market Failures And High Prices’
Closer Member State Cooperation Is On The Agenda
Varying levels of access to medicines across the EU are the result of market failures, high prices and pharmaceutical companies’ marketing strategies, says the Council of the EU, which will discuss these issues at the next meeting of European health ministers.
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Health ministers have called for more action on access to medicines, including a new EU work agenda, rebuilding Europe’s manufacturing capabilities, further action on pricing, and greater leeway for member states to mitigate drug shortages by restricting parallel exports.
EU member states are being urged by the European Commission to cooperate more closely on pricing and reimbursement, managed access deals and policies to promote generics and biosimilars.
Civil society groups have welcomed a French parliamentary amendment that would require pharma firms to disclose any public R&D funding when negotiating drug prices with the health authorities. The pharmaceutical industry says the amendment does not take account of the realities of today's business model.