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Pharmaceutical Pricing and Reimbursement Policies in Germany


  • Valérie Paris


  • Elizabeth Docteur



This paper describes pharmaceutical pricing and reimbursement policies in Germany, considering them in the broader environment in which they operate, and assesses their impact on the achievement of a number of policy goals. Pharmaceutical coverage is comprehensive, with a high level of public funding, and ensures access to treatments. However, recent increases in out-of-pocket payments may impair affordability for the poorest part of the population. Germany does not regulate ex-manufacturer prices of pharmaceuticals at market entry (though distribution margins are regulated for reimbursed drugs). On the other hand, maximum reimbursement amounts (known as reference prices) are set for products which can be clustered in groups of equivalent (generic) or comparable products (...) Ce document décrit les politiques de prix et de remboursement des médicaments en Allemagne, en les replaçant dans le contexte plus large dans lequel elles s’insèrent, et évalue leur impact sur l’atteinte de plusieurs objectifs. La couverture des médicaments par l’assurance maladie est bonne, caractérisée par un haut niveau de prise en charge publique, et permet un bon accès aux traitements. Cependant, les augmentations récentes des paiements à la charge des usagers pourraient entraver l’accessibilité financière pour les populations les plus modestes. L’Allemagne ne régule pas les prix fabricant des médicaments à leur entrée sur le marché, mais seulement les marges des distributeurs pour les médicaments pris en charge par l’assurance maladie. D’un autre côté, des montants maximum de remboursement (souvent nommés “prix de référence ") sont fixés pour les produits qui peuvent être rassemblés au sein de groupes de produits équivalents (génériques) ou comparables.

Suggested Citation

  • Valérie Paris & Elizabeth Docteur, 2008. "Pharmaceutical Pricing and Reimbursement Policies in Germany," OECD Health Working Papers 39, OECD Publishing.
  • Handle: RePEc:oec:elsaad:39-en
    DOI: 10.1787/228483137521

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    Cited by:

    1. repec:dau:papers:123456789/5987 is not listed on IDEAS
    2. Begoña Garcia Mariñoso & Izabela Jelovac & Pau Olivella, 2011. "External referencing and pharmaceutical price negotiation," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 20(6), pages 737-756, June.
    3. Gorecki, Paul K. & Nolan, Anne & Brick, Aoife & Lyons, Seán, 2012. "Pharmaceuticals Delivery in Ireland. Getting a Bigger Bang for the Buck," Research Series, Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI), number RS24, January.
    4. Hossein, Zare & Gerard, Anderson, 2013. "Trends in cost sharing among selected high income countries—2000–2010," Health Policy, Elsevier, vol. 112(1), pages 35-44.
    5. Katharina Elisabeth Fischer & Taika Koch & Karel Kostev & Tom Stargardt, 2018. "The impact of physician-level drug budgets on prescribing behavior," The European Journal of Health Economics, Springer;Deutsche Gesellschaft für Gesundheitsökonomie (DGGÖ), vol. 19(2), pages 213-222, March.
    6. Corinne Blanquart & Saskia Seidel & Ina Frenzel, 2018. "A conceptual framework to identify key drivers for logistics and transport demand - testing the scheme for goods movement in the pharmaceutical supply chain in France and Germany [Un cadre conceptu," Post-Print hal-01919122, HAL.
    7. repec:ces:ifodic:v:8:y:2010:i:3:p:14566949 is not listed on IDEAS
    8. MathiasKifmann & SvenNeelsen, 2010. "Germany's Struggle with Prices for Patent-protected Drugs," ifo DICE Report, ifo Institute - Leibniz Institute for Economic Research at the University of Munich, vol. 8(03), pages 43-52, October.
    9. Geng, Difei & Saggi, Kamal, 2020. "Optimal price regulations in international pharmaceutical markets with generic competition," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 71(C).

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • I11 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - Analysis of Health Care Markets
    • I18 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - Government Policy; Regulation; Public Health

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