"Increasing the use of generic drugs without penalizing brands too much". This is the path traced by the Deputy Minister of Health, Ferruccio Fazio, to reduce public pharmaceutical expenditure. Fazio explains: in terms of the diffusion of generics, "we are at too low levels compared to the rest of Europe. But I tell the president of Farmindustria, Sergio Dompé, to rest assured: it is not a threat. We will face this process together. We must reopen the table with pharmaceuticals to also discuss the redistribution of margins in the distribution sector to align them with the European situation, for example with mechanisms that reward hospital pharmaceuticals". But to the reassurances of the deputy minister, speaking to journalists, Dompé replies: "Since the pharmaceutical expenditure paid by the State is 188 euros per citizen against the European average of 265, the problem of generics is a false problem. We do not ask for benefits or discounts, but in the last 7 years public pharmaceutical expenditure has even retreated in terms of absolute turnover. My underlying fear is that a basic industrial structure of our country will become impoverished". Scenario that, according to the director general of Aifa (Italian drug agency), Guido Rasi, could only occur if "savings were eliminated by reducing the spending ceiling. What the deputy minister has in mind - he clarifies - is to reallocate the money saved on the health supply chain and therefore on pharmaceuticals. For example, we have a pipeline of high-cost drugs and we could make them available to everyone more quickly with these savings".
Pharmacist33 – 10 November 2009 – Year 5, Number 191