The Spanish pharmaceutical market is forecast to grow from $23.7bn in value in 2016 to $25.1bn by 2021, according to a report by GlobalData .
Titled ‘CountryFocus: Healthcare, Regulatory and Reimbursement Landscape – Spain’, the report covers the impact of the Spanish government’s austerity measures on the pharmaceutical industry.
The main factors contributing to the market growth are the consolidation of the biotech industry, an ageing population, support from the government, and availability of skilled labour force.
The Spanish government had undertaken numerous price containment measures such as the formation of homogenous groups of substitutable products and removal of the two-year period for reduction of prices by pharmaceutical companies.
Such measures contracted the value of the industry by 13.7% between 2010 and 2014. It also ensured that pharmacists dispensed the cheapest medicine available to patients.
The government has now introduced tax incentives and developed a strong research and development (R&D) infrastructure to aid the development of innovative medicines. The Spanish pharmaceutical industry invested $1.2bn in R&D in 2015 as a result.
E-health services have also been introduced by the government to enable patients to receive online prescriptions, thereby increasing healthcare access. Furthermore, the government launched electronic clinical records, which use information technology to integrate public hospital services with those of the National Health System (Sistema Nacional de Salud, SNS). These services are expected to further boost the industry.