Cheap drugs on the way

16th January 2004, Comments 0 comments

16 January 2004, BRUSSELS – Around half of all medicines on sale in Belgium should be cheaper from March this year, the government has announced.

16 January 2004

BRUSSELS – Around half of all medicines on sale in Belgium should be cheaper from March this year, the government has announced.

The move concerns drugs that have been on sale in Belgium for more than 15 years.

The government wants drug firms to cut the price of products that have been in the shops for between 15 and 17 years by 2.3 percent. It says drugs that are older than 17 years should have 4.5 percent lopped off of their price tags.

The new measures would help the Belgian government reduce the country’s hefty health budget, Social Affairs Minister Rudy Demotte explained.

The minister was quick to add that the quality of the medicines would not be affected by the price cuts.

Drug firms will not be obliged to introduce the new prices but they could see their markets considerably reduced if they do not.

Under the new rules, patients would have to get special permission from a health fund doctor before they were reimbursed for any ‘old’ drugs that had not had their prices reduced.

[Copyright Expatica News 2004]

Subject: Belgian news

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