Labour MEP for Munster, Phil Prendergast, secured changes to an EU proposal on pricing transparency for medicines at a vote yesterday in the Internal Market and Consumer Protection Committee of the European Parliament.
The changes to legislation aim at keeping up with the latest developments in medicines and pharmaceuticals, and securing better pricing practices.
Highlighting key improvements amongst the proposals secured, Ms. Prendergast said:
“We want to facilitate access to affordable generic medicines in the biotechnology field which were a rarity in 1989, when the current legislation was approved.
“Likewise, we are trying to improve patient access to the so-called “orphan drugs,” which target rare diseases, while ensuring that the Member State’s healthcare authorities have access to all information to gauge their effectiveness.
“Indeed, it is important to make sure that governments are not rushed and mislead into purchasing costly products without full access to all data available.
“Governments will be able to negotiate voluntary contracts with undisclosed conditions that depend on the actual effectiveness of new and innovative medicines over time.
“We also want to see more comparable data on the price of medicines across countries with similar levels of income, so that we can better identify opportunities to get more value for the money publicly spent on healthcare. Distribution and regulatory problems at Member State level that cost us money will become apparent and this will help us bring about change”, she said.