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The generic drug market in Japan: will it finally take off?

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  • Iizuka, Toshiaki
  • Kubo, Kensuke

Abstract

Historically, brand-name pharmaceuticals have enjoyed long periods of market exclusivity in Japan, given the limited use of generics after patent expiration. To improve the efficiency of the health-care system, however, the government has recently implemented various policies aimed at increasing generic substitution. Although this has created expectations that the Japanese generic drug market may finally take off, to date, generic usage has increased only modestly. After reviewing the incentives of key market participants to choose generics, we argue that previous government policies did not provide proper incentives for pharmacies to boost generic substitution. We offer some recommendations that may help to increase generic usage.

Suggested Citation

  • Iizuka, Toshiaki & Kubo, Kensuke, 2011. "The generic drug market in Japan: will it finally take off?," Health Economics, Policy and Law, Cambridge University Press, vol. 6(03), pages 369-389, June.
  • Handle: RePEc:cup:hecopl:v:6:y:2011:i:03:p:369-389_00
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    Cited by:

    1. Fukushima, Kazuya & Mizuoka, Sou & Yamamoto, Shunsuke & Iizuka, Toshiaki, 2016. "Patient cost sharing and medical expenditures for the Elderly," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 45(C), pages 115-130.
    2. Takizawa, Osamu & Urushihara, Hisashi & Tanaka, Shiro & Kawakami, Koji, 2015. "Price difference as a predictor of the selection between brand name and generic statins in Japan," Health Policy, Elsevier, vol. 119(5), pages 612-619.
    3. Mihajlo B, Jakovljevic & Nakazono, S & Ogura, S, 2014. "Contemporary generic market in Japan – key conditions to successful evolution," CIS Discussion paper series 613, Center for Intergenerational Studies, Institute of Economic Research, Hitotsubashi University.

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