LONDON, Nov. 28, 2017 /PRNewswire/ — The Future of Market Access in Europe
The challenges and barriers to market access across Europe continue to be widely debated against the ever-present backdrop of cost-cutting and budgetary pressures. At the same time, the healthcare world keeps on turning and pharma must continue to push forward and ensure the latest drugs reach the patients they are designed for. But what is the current mood amongst payers? How effective is are market access strategies in the current climate? And what do the decision-makers on drug usage think today about how the industry is responding to the immense challenges they are it is facing?
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• Payers and health-technology assessment (HTA) agencies at multiple levels of healthcare systems have a growing influence on market-access conditions for medicines in Europe. The barriers to market access are increasing as health systems address the challenges of sustainability in the face of global trends such as population ageing.
• Medicines remain an easy target for cost-cutting, with payers particularly concerned about rising expenditure on orphan drugs, cancer therapies and premium-priced, high-volume medicines such as direct-acting antivirals for hepatitis C. As a result, there is growing encouragement in the EU for closer collaboration between regulatory and HTA functions to support more flexible approaches to drug approval and value assessment. However, payers in the EU5 markets (France, Germany, Italy, Spain and the UK) are unclear about the prospects for more co-operation between stakeholders in market access.
• Member states are also embracing pan-European cooperation on HTA procedures, and even pricing and reimbursement, to an unprecedented degree. However, payers see EU-wide harmonisation of HTA procedures as intrinsically limited by national and local priorities in pricing and reimbursement. Nor do they expect much impact on market access from member-state alliances to mitigate drug-price inflation. Larger member states may prefer to rely on superior leverage and negotiate national-level discounts or other cost-sharing arrangements.
• Payers expect the UK’s pending ‘Brexit’ withdrawal from the European Union to have little bearing on market access across the EU, beyond some potential disruption to drug supply from changing trade patterns and relocation of the European Medicines Agency.