The newly proposed pharmacy dispensing fee structure by the
Department of Health is likely to increase generic sales.
Paul Anley, CEO of leading generics distributor, Pharma
Dynamics says the move throws open the door for a greater demand and more
competitively priced generic medicines in South Africa.
“The fee structure provides a higher mark-up on less
expensive medication, which will incentivise pharmacists to substitute with a
generic equivalent, which is in the patient's best interest.
“Similar models are commonplace in Europe and North America
where incentive schemes are used to encourage pharmacists to choose cost effective
generic medication. This result in far higher market share for generics against
their originator equivalents and in doing so also saves the state billions in
Anley estimates that in South Africa the use of generics
saves in excess of R3.5bn a year and more aggressive use could increase that
figure by a further R1bn.
“It is important to note that the regulations stipulate the
maximum dispensing fee that can be charged by a pharmacist. Individual
pharmacists may continue to adopt their own fee structures as long as they
don't charge more than that which has been specified in the bill.
“In the wake of the changes we are calling on medical aids
to review their reimbursement policies and reference pricing with the new
dispensing fees in mind in order to control costs and ensure the affordability
of medicines to patients,” concludes Anley.
For further information please contact either Brigitte Taim
or Natasha Adonis on 021 448 7407.
-Issued by Lange
Strategic Communications on behalf of Pharma Dynamics.