Prices of Pharmaceuticals: A Comparison of Prescription Drug Prices in Sweden with Nine European Countries

Type/nr R01/12
Skrevet av Kurt R. Brekke and Tor Helge Holmås

We study the price level of pharmaceuticals in Sweden relative to the following nine European countries; Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Finland, Germany, Ireland, the Netherlands, Norway, and United Kingdom (UK). Our sample consists of prescription drugs that do not have generic sale in Sweden. Using IMS Health data on prices and sales volumes for the first half of 2010, we compute several price indices to describe the price differences and potential cost savings in the non-generic market segment. Our results show that the Swedish price level is slightly below average relative to the other European countries. UK, Norway and the Netherlands tend to have lower prices than Sweden, whereas Germany, Ireland and Denmark tend to have higher prices. Finland has lower prices than Sweden on wholesale level, but slightly higher prices at retail level. Austria and Belgium have about the same price level as Sweden.

Språk Skrevet på engelsk