Officials mull incentives to increase use of generic drugs

Health officials in Greece are considering removing a prescriptions ceiling imposed on all public healthcare doctors if they are able to ensure that at least 60 percent of the drugs they prescribe are generic.

The Health Ministry and public healthcare provider EOPYY are also considering providing pharmacists with incentives to sell generic rather than brand-name medicines. The government wants to increase the use of generic drugs to 60 percent of all medicines used in Greece in order to lower spending. However, the country is currently well short of this target.

EOPYY president Dimitris Kontos told Kathimerini that greater use of generic drugs would do more than just save money. “It would allow us to better distribute our capped spending on medicines,” he said, adding that by spending less on brand-name drugs, EOPYY could invest more in “pioneering medicines.”

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