Two Big Pharma Firms Quit UK Pricing Scheme In Protest Over High Levies
Lilly says the current voluntary drug pricing and access scheme has harmed innovation and left the UK a “global outlier” among major countries, while AbbVie asserts that this year’s repayment rates of 26.5% will impair its ability to operate sustainably in the country. The industry body, the ABPI, says it will come up with proposals for a “completely new settlement” in the coming months.
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In 2022, a total of five companies chose to exit the UK’s voluntary scheme that manages branded medicines spending. The departure of two big firms – AbbVie and Lilly – is seen as a deliberate tactic to send a clear signal to government that the scheme is not working for industry and is jeopardizing investment and access to medicines in the UK.
Negotiations on the successor to the UK’s 2019 voluntary drug pricing scheme are due to start in April 2023. The industry body, the ABPI, is calling for a clean sheet approach, but others suggest that could make it almost impossible to reach agreement in less than a year and that reform may be a more realistic proposition.
The UK government says that payments need to rise if the stability of the statutory and voluntary drug pricing schemes is to be ensured.