New Royal Decree further tightening drug funding in Spain

The Spanish cabinet just approved the new Real Decreto - ley 9/2011 – another set of measures in the fight to tighten the state’s budget. Among the updated rules in the new law is that doctors only can prescribe drugs (with a few exceptions) according to the active substance (principio activo (PPA)) rather than by brand. This, according to the Spanish government, should ensure that only the cheapest available medicine is being dispensed within the national health system. On the other hand the therapeutic price referencing system, article 93, will be once again altered - the second time in a year - whereby the system will now be converted into a low price mechanism that only looks at the financing of the cheapest drug in the class.

This new set of cost containment measures come not really as a big surprise but the implications are most likely to further negatively affect the pharmaceutical sector in Spain in terms of employments and investments in R and D says Farmindustria, the Spanish industry organization.

Here is the link to the full text of the decree.

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