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Pfizer Picks on France

Executive Summary

Drug price fixing throughout Europe has long frustrated the pharmaceutical industry, but Pfizer's CEO has singled out France as the worst perpetrator.

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Changing Promotional Spend

Big Pharma's investment in drug promotion between 1998-2001 increased nearly three times as fast in the US as in the largest European market, and in absolute terms was more than 12 times higher in 2001. European restrictions on promotional spend and a continent-wide ban on DTC advertising severely limit the benefits of promotion there. The progression of marketing spend in individual European markets varies, however.

It's a Small World After All

The increasing number of US proposals to cut profits for drug companies--usually via price cuts--are far more worrisome to the drug industry than even the Clinton health care proposals of 1993-94. Extrapolating from IMS Health sales data, profits from the US market probably represent considerably more than half of the profits in the worldwide drug industry, a significant change from even a few years ago.

In a Hot Political Climate, Drug Prices Continue to Rise

US drug prices continued to rise at rates far greater than inflation in 1998, according to data released by pharmacy benefit management company Express Scripts Inc. Not only are drug prices high, but the rate of increase keeps escalating,


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