The impact of the reference price system on the pharmaceutical market: A theoretical approach
AbstractThis article analyses the impact of the reference price system on the price-setting strategies of the pharmaceutical firms and on the level of generic usage. This model is the first to take explicitly into account the impact of the reference price mechanism on the level of competition between brand-name and generic drugs and national pharmaceutical spending. We consider a duopolistic model with one firm producing the brand-name drug, whose patent has already expired, and the other producing the corresponding generic version. We work in a partial equilibrium framework where firms set prices sequentially and consumers face heterogeneous switching costs.We show that brand producers compensate the decline of profits by selling greater quantities instead of charging higher prices, thus fostering price competition in the pharmaceutical market. This result is a consequence of both the assumption of a vertically differentiated model and the introduction of the reference price system.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra in its series Economics Working Papers with number 524.
Date of creation: Dec 2000
Date of revision: Jun 2003
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Web page: http://www.econ.upf.edu/
Brand-name and generic drugs; pricing mechanismand switching costs;
Find related papers by JEL classification:
- I18 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - Government Policy; Regulation; Public Health
- L11 - Industrial Organization - - Market Structure, Firm Strategy, and Market Performance - - - Production, Pricing, and Market Structure; Size Distribution of Firms
- L15 - Industrial Organization - - Market Structure, Firm Strategy, and Market Performance - - - Information and Product Quality
- L51 - Industrial Organization - - Regulation and Industrial Policy - - - Economics of Regulation
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- Jorge Mestre, 2003. "Reference prices: The Spanish way," Investigaciones Economicas, Fundación SEPI, vol. 27(1), pages 125-149, January.
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- Brekke, Kurt R. & Konigbauer, Ingrid & Straume, Odd Rune, 2007.
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- Brekke, Kurt R & Königbauer, Ingrid & Straume, Odd Rune, 2005. "Reference Pricing of Pharmaceuticals," Working Papers in Economics 19/05, University of Bergen, Department of Economics.
- Kurt R. Brekke & Ingrid Königbauer & Odd Rune Straume, 2006. "Reference Pricing of Pharmaceuticals," CESifo Working Paper Series 1825, CESifo Group Munich.
- Ghislandi, Simone, 2011. "Competition and the Reference Pricing Scheme for pharmaceuticals," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 30(6), pages 1137-1149.
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