March 28, 2013 | By Márcio Barra
The whole drug price debate in Portugal continues, as the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA) association want to place Portugal in a “priority vigilance list”, due to difficulties American pharmaceutical companies are having in Portugal.
In a report that Lusa News Agency had access, PhRMA states that they, and the companies they represent, are worried with Portugal, as it has “an ineffective patent protection mechanism”, being “very difficult to ensure timely resolution of patent disputes in Portugal”
They are also unhappy with the ongoing cost containment measures and drug expenditure cuts that are being applied, which “do not make up the value of innovation and deny the benefits that innovative drugs can bring to Portugal”. The report further states that these “budget constraints “are unrealistic, namely the goal of reducing the public expenditure on medicines to 1% of the GDP. These “increasing difficulties” are affecting the launch of many innovative drugs in Portugal.
PhRMA wants to include Portugal in a “priority vigilance list” expecting a “swift and effective” resolution.
João Almeida Lopes, the president of the Portuguese Association of Pharmaceutical Industry (Apifarma), commented to Lusa that the current government measures are “compromising Portugal”, and that he already warned the Portuguese Government to the patent issue.