The WHO Collaborating Centre for Pharmaceutical Pricing and Reimbursement contributed to the recently published book ‘Pharmaceutical Prices in the 21st Century’ (http://www.springer.com/us/book/9783319121680) with a chapter on pharmaceutical pricing policies (e.g. external price references, distribution remuneration, discounts, generic pricing policies) in 30 European countries. Information is based on country information provided by members of the PPRI network.
More information at: http://whocc.goeg.at/Publications/FurtherReading
On 28 November 2014, the first Conference titled ‘The breadth of health economics’ of the Austrian Health Economics Association (ATHEA) was held in Vienna. Abstracts of the staff of the Health Economics Department of Gesundheit Österreich GmbH (GÖG) were accepted for presentation: Julia Bobek presented the study ‘Effects of day surgery units on hospital efficiency in Austria. An efficiency evaluation’ which she had conducted as thesis for the Master programme ‘Health Care, Policy, Innovation and Management’ at Maastricht University in cooperation with GOEG. Dr. Sabine Vogler presented a medicine price study (here).
On 3 and 4 November 2014, a group of four officials from the Ministry of Health of Malaysia visited the WHO Collaborating Centre for Pharmaceutical Pricing and Reimbursement Policies for a training on pharmaceutical pricing and reimbursement policies in Austria and Europe.
In October 2014, the Austrian Health Institute published a comparison of prices of 30 high-cost medicines in Austria and 15 European countries.
The study (in German) is available at: http://www.goeg.at/index.php?pid=produkteberichtedetail&bericht=315&smark=kostenin&noreplace=yes
Dr Sabine Vogler, principal investigator of the study ‘Study of the policy mix for the reimbursement of medicinal products. Proposal for a best practice-based approach based on stakeholder assessment’, funded by the Health Programme of the European Union, was invited to present the study findings at the session ‘Strengthening Health System Performance – What should be on the EU menu?’ at the European Health Forum Gastein 2014.
The Health Economics Department is the national focal point on behalf of Austria for the European Drug Utilization Research Group (EuroDURG).
Further information on EuroDURG: http://www.pharmacoepi.org/eurodurg/natgroups.cfm
Abstracts from the Health Economics Department at GÖG were accepted: Dr Sabine Vogler presented a research about pharmaceutical policy measures in European countries during the crisis, and had two posters on medicine price comparisons.
Poster accessible: http://whocc.goeg.at/Publications/Posters
Ten current and past WHO Collaborating Centres working in the area of pharmaceutical policy and regulation and representatives of WHO met in Groningen (the Netherlands) on 26 August 2014 to exchange information and strengthen cooperation.
The WHO Collaborating Centre for Pharmaceutical Pricing and Reimbursement Policies published a comprehensive report about the Turkey pharmaceutical system in the out-patient and the in-patient sectors (Short PPRI / PHIS Pharma Profile Turkey 2013).
Full access to: http://whocc.goeg.at/Publications/CountryReports
The Health Economics Department at Gesundheit Österreich is pleased about its re-designation as WHO Collaborating Centre for Pharmaceutical Pricing and Reimbursement Policies for the next four years.
Staff of WHO CC analyzed a sample of pharmaceutical waste drawn from household garbage in Vienna. The study showed that some medicines end up unused or partially used in normal household garbage in Vienna. The results did not confirm speculations about a high percentage of unused medicines improperly discarded.
Access to the full text at http://whocc.goeg.at/Publications/Articles.
Staff of the WHO CC analyzed the impact of deregulation in community pharmacy on accessibility of medicines, quality of pharmacy services and costs. The study concluded that access to pharmacies usually increases after a deregulation but this is likely to favour urban populations with already good accessibility. Prices of OTC medicines were not found to decrease after a deregulation in pharmacy. Policy-makers are recommended to take action to ensure equitable accessibility and sustainable competition in a more deregulated environment.
More information at: http://whocc.goeg.at/Publications/Articles.
Around 40 pharmacy students from Utrecht University came to the Vienna WHO Collaborating Centre on 16 April 2014. During the study visit, the Vienna Centre presented its activities, and there was a vivid exchange of information and discussion on pharmaceutical policies.
The Division of Pharmacoepidemiology and Clinical Pharmacology at Utrecht University, the Netherlands (the WHO Collabrating Centre for Pharmaceutical Policy and Regulation), offers three international summer courses:
30 June-4 July 2014 - Pharmacoepidemiology & Drug safety
7-11 July 2014 - Pharmaceutical Policy Analysis (in collaboration with WHO)
14-18 July 2014 - Pharmacoeconomics
More information can be found on the summer school website: www.utrechtsummerschool.nl
Gesundheit Österreich Forschungs- und Planungs GmbH and SOGETI (Luxembourg) published in March 2014 the final report of a study with the title “Policy Mix for the reimbursement of medicinal products: proposal for a best-practice based approach based on stakeholder assessment” which was funded by the Health Programme of the European Union.
The main objective of this study was to investigate which policy mix related to the reimbursement of medicines stakeholders would consider as ideal and, based on their assessments investigated in a Multi-Criteria Decision Analysis (MCDA), to develop a proposal for the best practice-based approach for such a policy mix, by reconciling the different – often conflicting – policy objectives such as e.g. equitable access to medicines, reward for innovation and cost-containment.
Main results of the report are:
Full access to the report: http://whocc.goeg.at/Publications/BooksReports
Jaana Martikainen, Head of Medicine research at the Finnish Social Insurance Institution KELA, joined the WHO Collaborating Centre for Pharmaceutical Pricing and Reimbursement Policies in Vienna for a two-months fellowship from February till April 2014.
The WHO Collaborating Centre for Pharmaceutical Pricing and Reimbursement Policies published a comprehensive report about the Austrian pharmaceutical system in the out-patient and the in-patient sectors (PPRI/PHIS Pharma Profile Austria 2012) and a brief report (Short PPRI / PHIS Pharma Profile Austria 2013).
Full access to: http://whocc.goeg.at/Publications/CountryReports
Congratulation to Dr. Christine Leopold! In January 2014, Christine Leopold, staff member of the Vienna WHO Collaborating Centre for Pharmaceutical Pricing and Reimbursement Policies, successfully defended her PhD thesis and completed the PhD programme for professionals at the Utrecht WHO Collaborating Centre for Pharmaceutical Policy and Regulation (http://www.pharmaceuticalpolicy.nl/PhD%20Program.html).
The WHO Collaborating Centre for Pharmaceutical Pricing and Reimbursement Policies published the 2013 Update of the Glossary on Pharmaceutical Terms. The glossary update was done as part of our work on the development and promotion of a common understanding and language on pharmaceutical issues (see http://whocc.goeg.at/Topics/Terminology, http://whocc.goeg.at/Publications/Methodology
WHO published this Guideline to assist national policy-makers and other stakeholders in identifying and implementing policies to manage pharmaceutical prices.
A new WHO report calls for pharmaceutical researchers to adjust their research and development efforts to account for this shifting demographic. The report ‘Priority medicines for Europe and the world 2013 update’ focuses on pharmaceutical ‘gaps’, where treatments for a disease or condition may soon become ineffective, are not appropriate for the target patient group, does not exist, or are not sufficiently effective.
Since the original report was published in 2004, progress has been mixed. Patients, and particularly the elderly, often require medication for multiple chronic conditions. However, research and treatment guidelines tend to be more disease-driven than patient-centered.
In addition to conditions related to ageing, the report identifies a number of other important topics for future pharmaceutical research. Other highlights of the report include additional critical factors to pharmaceutical innovation, such as optimizing regulatory systems for market authorization; adopting effective pricing and reimbursement policies to create incentives; and leverage of existing electronic health records to obtain valuable data to improve medicine safety and effectiveness. Within Europe there are moves towards adaptive licensing and value-based pricing that will potentially change access to and incentives for new medicines. The need for meaningful patient and citizen involvement in pharmaceutical innovation and access was highlighted.
This report is an update to the 2004 version and is a collaborative product of the experts from WHO, EU Member States, industry, academia and other interested stakeholders including patients. The Vienna WHO Collaborating Centre for Pharmaceutical Pricing and Reimbursement Policies contributed by co-authoring the background chapter ‘BP 8.3 - Pricing and reimbursement policies: Impacts on innovation’.
For the full press release see
For the Priority Medicines Report see: http://whocc.goeg.at/Publications/FurtherReading
Staff of the WHO Collaborating Centre for Pharmaceutical Pricing and Reimbursement Policies wrote articles about medicine prices in hospitals disseminating the outcomes of the PHIS (Pharmaceutical Health Information System) project, for further information on the PHIS project see also: http://whocc.goeg.at/About/ -> PHIS .
Access to the full text at http://whocc.goeg.at/Publications/Articles
This OECD study analyses how 14 OECD countries refer to "value" when making decisions on reimbursement and prices of new medicines. It details the type of outcomes considered, the perspective and methods adopted for economic evaluation when used; and the consideration of budget impact. It describes which dimensions are taken into account in the assessment of "innovativeness" and the consequences of this assessment on prices; it confirms that treatments for severe and/or rare diseases are often more valued than others and shows how countries use product-specific agreements in an attempt to better align value and price.
For the OECD report see: http://whocc.goeg.at/Publications/FurtherReading
The next congreee of the European Association of Hospital Pharmacists (EAHP) will take place next year from 26-28 March 2014 in Barcelona, Spain. This congress’ theme is “The innovative hospital pharmacist – imagination, skills and organization”.
More details about the congress may be found on the EAHP website at: http://www.eahp.eu/congresses
The article provides an overview about the existence and types of discounts and rebates granted to public payers by the pharmaceutical industry in European countries. Data were provided by public authorities for pharmaceutical pricing and reimbursement represented in the PPRI (Pharmaceutical Pricing and Reimbursement Information) network.Access to the full text at http://whocc.goeg.at/Publications/Articles.
Congratulations to Kees de Joncheere who was appointed as the new Director of Essential Medicines and Pharmaceuticals Policies (EMP) in WHO Headquarters in Geneva.
Kees de Joncheere was WHO Representative and Head of Country Office in Ukraine. Before, he was Regional Adviser Pharmaceuticals and Health technologies in WHO Europe.
The WHO Collaborating Centre for Pharmaceutical Pricing and Reimbursement Policies published a Spanish glossary of pharmaceutical terms with English translation of the key words.
The Spanish glossary was developed as part of our work on the development and promotion of a common understanding and language on pharmaceutical issues (see http://whocc.goeg.at/Topics/Terminology).
The PPRI project was selected by the Executive Agency for Health and Consumers, in collaboration with the Health Programme’s National Focal Points (NFP) and the Directorate General for Health and Consumers (DG SANCO) as a good practice example of a EU Public Health projects with an important impact for EU Member States.
The Austrian Health Institute published a study which analyzed the impact of pharmacy deregulation and regulation based on a survey in nine European countries. The countries investigated were countries with a deregulated community pharmacy sector (England, Ireland, the Netherlands, Norway, and Sweden) on the one hand and countries with a regulated community pharmacy sector (Austria, Denmark, Finland, and Spain) on the other hand.
The study concluded that expectations which were often connected to deregulation in the community pharmacy sector, in particular to improved accessibility and reduced medicines prices, could not be fully met. Liberalisation in the pharmacy sector can even have consequences, which might impede a good and equitable access to medicines, such as
Detailed results are available in a 250 page full report which contains:
Key outcomes and conclusions are provided in a concise 20 page summary report.
From 2 to 6 July 2012, the Pharmaceutical Policy Analysis Summer Course, organized by the Utrecht WHO Collaborating Centre for Pharmacoepidemiology and Pharmaceutical Policy Analysis, will take place. Further information at: http://www.utrechtsummerschool.nl/index.php?type=courses&code=M7
One year after its designation, the WHO CC launched its website.
The WHO Collaborating Centre launched its website designed as an information platform about pharmaceutical pricing and reimbursement policies. It will serve as the major website on pharmaceutical policies at the Austrian Health Institute and will be constantly updated.
The conference will take place at Università Bocconi on 10th February 2012
The conference will take place at Università Bocconi on 10th February 2012. Four different perspectives Global Health & Development; Health Care Management; Health Systems Planning & Governance; Pharmaceutical & Medical Technology will be exposed and discussed during the Plenary and the Round Table sessions. The discussants are high level academics and prominent figures from all parts of the globe and all areas of health care (Policy, Management, Economics, Global and Public Health). Please find more information on the conference website: http://www.sdabocconi.it/en/universal_health_coverage/
The WHO Collaborating Centre for Pharmacoepidemiology and Pharmaceutical Policy Analysis invites to its winter meeting
The WHO Collaborating Centre for Pharmacoepidemiology and Pharmaceutical Policy Analysis invites to its winter meeting on 5&6 January 2012 and calls for abstracts. The central theme of the first meeting day is "Methods to evaluate health technologies, including medical devices and pharmaceuticals". On the second day submitted abstracts will be presented and discussed in the morning (oral presentations) and during lunch (poster presentations). Please download the invitation and the details on the call for abstracts here.
Vienna, 29/30 September
The WHO Collaborating Centre for Pharmaceutical Pricing and Reimbursement Policies is pleased to announce the PPRI Conference “Balancing pharmaceutical policies between equity and cost-containment – a critical discussion and lessons learned” in Vienna on 29/30 September 2011.
Main topics of the conference are:
from a global, international, European perspective.
Please download the PPRI 2011 conference folder.
The Centre celebrated its designation
The World Health Organization (WHO) established its third Collaborating Centre in Austria. The Health Economics Department of Gesundheit Österreich (GÖG) / Austrian Health Institute, was designated as a WHO Collaborating Centre for Pharmaceutical Pricing and Reimbursement Policies. On 20 September 2010 the official launch of the WHO CC was celebrated at the Austrian Health Institute with representatives of the World Health Organization (Kees de Joncheere, Prof. Richard Laing and Dr. Hans Hogerzeil).