The microeconomics of price policies in the pharmaceutical industry

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dc.contributor.author Appasamy, Thiru Nayagar
dc.date.accessioned 2007-02-23T13:01:04Z
dc.date.available 2007-02-23T13:01:04Z
dc.date.issued 2007-02-23T13:01:04Z
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/10539/2106
dc.description Student Number : 7909638 - MCom dissertation - School of Economics and Business Sciences - Faculty of Commerce, Law and Management en
dc.description.abstract Healthcare, it can be argued, is a commodity that has a social constitution. The reason may be because healthcare is seen to have its foundation in socio-economic principles but has evolved through scientific study and business application into a profitable business. The delivery of healthcare in South Africa and in many parts of the world has come under immense scrutiny from policy-makers, high-volume purchasers, patient-consumers and the healthcare community. Arguments criticizing the high cost of healthcare delivery range from levelling the blame on one component (pharmaceuticals, medical fees, inadequate medical scheme cover to name a few examples) to a condemnation of the entire healthcare delivery system. The healthcare cost deliberation has also shifted to the centre stage in many public-policy debates and certainly caught the imagination of the public and journalists alike. It is an emotional debate. A review of related literature of the past fifty years (such as the Sainsbury Report (1967), the Kefauver Hearings (1963) and the Snyman Report (1962)), reveals that healthcare and the cost of healthcare delivery are some of the most frequently debated areas amongst the citizens and policy makers of both the developed and developing world. Pharmaceutical prices, more often than not, have been cast as the primary reason that the delivery cost of healthcare is so high. The methods used by pharmaceutical companies to promote their products – elaborate conventions, colourful brochures and generous amounts of free samples (certainly in previous years) to physicians may have contributed to this perception. Furthermore, the fact that the absolute cost of manufacturing a single capsule or tablet (including drugs that are no longer under patent) is a small fraction of the actual selling price also tends to raise the public ire. A greater understanding of pricing structures is necessary to appreciate this sector. The writer’s own experience in the area of healthcare that involves insurance for medical risks (medical schemes - the private healthcare funding system) suggests that it is crucial that pharmaceutical pricing structures be understood against this backdrop. Therefore the main reasons for undertaking this study are: i. to appreciate the pricing structures of pharmaceuticals to inform policy debates; ii. the current empirical evidence1 in the South African market has indicated that pharmaceuticals are unfairly priced and has prompted the Department of Health to introduce price regulations2. One goal of the research is to ascertain whether this is accurate; and iii. to obtain a broader knowledge base of the issue of pharmaceutical pricing practices in the South African healthcare market. It was with this approach that the area of pharmaceutical pricing and the topic was decided upon. en
dc.format.extent 1696362 bytes
dc.format.mimetype application/pdf
dc.language.iso en en
dc.subject Trips en
dc.subject Coase Theorem en
dc.subject Ramsey Pricing en
dc.subject Value Maximising Principle en
dc.subject Pharmacoeconomic en
dc.subject Price Policy en
dc.subject Price Regulation en
dc.subject Drug Efficiency en
dc.subject Transaction Costs en
dc.title The microeconomics of price policies in the pharmaceutical industry en
dc.type Thesis en


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