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International pharmaceutical price differences


  • Productivity Commission


The study compares manufacturer prices in Australia and seven other countries for 150 pharmaceuticals listed on the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS), as at 30 June 2000. The comprehensive study found that prices in the USA are between 80 to 160 per cent higher than in Australia, and prices in Canada, the UK and Sweden are around 50 per cent higher. Prices in Australia are closer to those in France, and about the same as those in Spain and New Zealand.

Suggested Citation

  • Productivity Commission, 2001. "International pharmaceutical price differences," Others 0107004, EconWPA.
  • Handle: RePEc:wpa:wuwpot:0107004
    Note: Type of Document - PDF; prepared on IBM PC ; to print on HP;

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    Cited by:

    1. Morgan, Steve & McMahon, Meghan & Greyson, Devon, 2008. "Balancing health and industrial policy objectives in the pharmaceutical sector: Lessons from Australia," Health Policy, Elsevier, vol. 87(2), pages 133-145, August.
    2. Gianluca Baio & Laura Magazzini & Antonio Nicita & Fabio Pammolli & Massimo Riccaboni, 2003. "Il Decreto DL 15/04/2002, n. 63 sul Contenimento della Spesa Farmaceutica - Impatto sull'Industria e Distorsioni nel Funzionamento del Mercato," Working Papers CERM 0-2003, Competitività, Regole, Mercati (CERM).
    3. John Quiggin, 2005. "How to kill a country?: The USÐAustralia Free Trade Agreement, pharmaceuticals and intellectual property," Australian Public Policy Program Working Papers WP1P05, Risk and Sustainable Management Group, University of Queensland.
    4. Doran, Evan & Robertson, Jane & Henry, David, 2005. "Moral hazard and prescription medicine use in Australia--the patient perspective," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 60(7), pages 1437-1443, April.
    5. Coenen, Michael & Haucap, Justus & Herr, Annika & Kuchinke, Björn A., 2011. "Wettbewerbspotenziale im deutschen Apothekenmarkt
      [The Potential for Competition between Pharmacies in Germany]
      ," DICE Ordnungspolitische Perspektiven 17, University of Düsseldorf, Düsseldorf Institute for Competition Economics (DICE).
    6. Anthony Harris & Jing Jing Li & Karen Yong, 2016. "What Can We Expect from Value-Based Funding of Medicines? A Retrospective Study," PharmacoEconomics, Springer, vol. 34(4), pages 393-402, April.
    7. Roberto Álvarez & Aldo González, 2018. "Análisis Comparativo de Precios de Medicamentos en América Latina," Working Papers wp462, University of Chile, Department of Economics.

    More about this item


    pharmaceuticals - pricing - drugs - Pharmaceutical Benefit Scheme - PBS - subsidy - price comparisons - therapeutic groups - molecules;

    JEL classification:

    • F - International Economics
    • I - Health, Education, and Welfare
    • Z - Other Special Topics

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