Improving Efficiency of Allocating Public Funds to Pharmaceuticals: A Pilot Study in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia
(2009; 7 pages)

Abstract

The optimal management of the allocation of limited public health funds across the growing diverse range of modern medicines is a challenge faced by both high and middle income countries. The context of this study is one in which reform strategies aim to accelerate patient access to the best available medicines, within the context of a well-managed and efficient budgetary regime. Critical in this regard is a concern to better match the usage patterns of medicines with changing patterns of disease prevalence in the local population. A second key aim is to manage the costs of established products more efficiently by the wider usage of less expensive generics in order to release funds to cover the cost of newer innovative products. In this article we report the results of a pilot study in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia in which a model has been developed for both recording and analysing past data on allocations across different classes of medicines and its use as a predictive tool to consider the potential consequences of choosing alternative priorities for future expenditure. We then explain how using the information from it informed strategic decisions on policy reforms to achieve these objectives.

 
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