Opportunities and barriers in access to medicines in the Dominican Republic analyzed
Various authorities gathered for the workshop: “Opportunities and Barriers for the implementation of Policies that favor access to medicines.” This event aimed to examine policies that benefit Dominicans’ viability and timely access to medicines.
This activity was attended by representatives of the British Embassy, the Central American and Caribbean Federation of Pharmaceutical Laboratories (Fedefarma), the Latin American Federation of the Pharmaceutical Industry (FIFARMA), the Superintendence of Health and Labor Risks (SISALRIL), Servicio Nacional de Salud (SNS), Dirección General de Información y Defensa de los Afiliados a la Seguridad Social (DIDA), Dirección de Medicamentos de Alto Costo (DAMAC), representatives of the INTEC and UASD academies, patient associations of the country and representatives of the pharmaceutical industry.
During the event, the results of the study “Financial Affordability to leverage technological innovation in healthcare in Latin America and the Caribbean”, developed within the framework of the collaboration agreement between Fifarma and Management Sciences for Health (MSH) based in Washington DC, were presented. This research aimed to compare the financial affordability policies of innovative drugs in the Dominican Republic and in 10 other countries in the area.
“Over the years, drugs have increased the life expectancy of the population by 40% and have prevented up to 50% of premature deaths. New drugs have radically changed the course of many deadly diseases such as AIDS, some types of cancer and Hepatitis C; in this scenario, the work of the innovative pharmaceutical sector becomes increasingly important and therefore the effort to improve access is of great relevance,” commented Victoria Brenes, Executive Director of Fedefarma.
The policies that were the object of this evaluation were: Access/competition, Prescription based on the International Nonproprietary Name (INN), Therapeutic substitutability-exchangeability (for generics/biosimilars), Price referencing and regulation, Tax exemption, Regulation of intermediation margins, Health Technology Evaluation (HTA), Public procurement, Direct/centralized negotiation and Managed access schemes (MAA).
The countries included in the analysis were Argentina, Brazil, Colombia, Costa Rica, Ecuador, Chile, Mexico, Dominican Republic, Peru, Panama, and Uruguay.
A productive dialogue was generated among the actors present, highlighting the need for multidisciplinary roundtables and joint work to design and implement improvements to the system.
ABOUT FEDEFARMA: Fedefarma is an association that represents the innovative pharmaceutical industry that researches, develops, and markets drugs and therapies for the prevention, treatment, and cure of diseases. It is integrated by 20 multinational research and development laboratories with a presence in Central America and the Caribbean.
An important part of our mission is to promote access to advances in medical science through programs that support institutions focusing on access to medicines and sustainability. We work together with governments and health authorities, regulators, the medical and scientific community, academia, and patients to facilitate access to innovation and guarantee the quality, safety, and efficacy of the medicines consumed by the population.
Most people have access to medicines in the RD, even the people in the campos have routes through local clinics, farmacias, and under the counter at colmados. The addendum to this access is the vendors may not have what is needed and thus the meds have to be ordered. It is somedays they have it other days they don’t.