The four-year duration of the agreement until 2020 provides patients and their treating physicians with stability in the care and availability of existing and new medicines. ENDS Notes for Writing: Among the main price elements of the new price agreement: Period: Period: The new short price agreement from August 1, 2016 to July 31, 2020. Basket composition: The basket of countries used to implement international benchmark prices for annual adjustments has increased from nine to fourteen, sweden, Portugal, Luxembourg, Greece, Italy, Belgium, Denmark and Finland, France, the Netherlands, Spain and the United Kingdom. The inclusion of a number of lower-priced countries will lead to lower prices in Ireland. Methodology: The methodology will remain the average price in the reference basket, adjusted for currency changes. Frequency of price adjustments: price adjustments are now annual (first on August 1, 2016, then July 1, 2017, 2018 – 2019). This will allow the state to obtain better value for money relative to the cost of medicines over the life of the agreement, as prices in other wicker countries will be reduced over time. PCRS (Community Schemes) Reduction: The PCRS reduction (currently 4%) June 1, 2016, at 5.25% and 0.25% from August 1, 2018, reaching 5.5%. Hospital rebate: A new measure in this agreement is that a 5.25% discount from 1 June 2016, which will increase to 5.5% from 1 August 2018, will now apply to hospital products. Lower price of small molecules in the event of a loss of exclusivity: the price of existing patented drugs is reduced to 50% of the initial factory starting price. There will be no gradual reduction to 50%, as was the case in the 2012 agreement. Reduction of biologizing products on the Irish market: the price of biologic drugs is reduced by 20% and the discount is increased to 12.5% if a biosimilar arrives.
Biosimilar drugs play a key role in improving the cost-effectiveness of pharmaceutical bills in the coming years, and this clause strikes the right balance between reducing the price paid by HSE and promoting new biosimilars in the markets.