Record increase in patented medicine sales in Canada, while pharmaceutical R&D investment remains at historic lows
The PMPRB is an independent quasi-judicial body that protects the interests of Canadian consumers by ensuring the prices of patented medicines sold in Canada are not excessive, and provides stakeholders with price, cost, and utilization information to help them make timely and knowledgeable drug pricing, purchasing, and reimbursement decisions.
The 2015 Annual Report sets out detailed information on the PMPRB’s regulatory activities; patentees’ compliance with the Board’s pricing guidelines; sales and trends of patented drugs in Canada, including international price comparisons, trends in all drug expenditures, and spending on pharmaceutical research and development (R&D).
- Canadian patented drug prices remain third-highest among the seven Patented Medicine Prices Review Board comparator countries, lower only than prices in Germany and the United States.
- Sales of patented drug products increased in 2015 to \\$15.2 billion from \\$13.8 billion in 2014, tying the record for the single-largest increase in patented drug sales in Canadian history.
- General anti-infective drugs, including breakthrough treatments for Hepatitis C, accounted for 15.8% of sales growth in 2015, an increase of 49.9% from 2014.
- Research and development investment in 2015 was reported at 4.4% of sales revenue for all pharmaceutical patentees, up from 4.3% in 2014, but far below the industry’s 10% commitment and lowest of all the countries to which Canada compares itself for pricing purposes.
- At the end of 2015, there were 93 ongoing investigations into possible excessive patented drug pricing.
- Five Voluntary Compliance Undertakings were accepted in 2015, with over \\$7 million in excess revenues paid back by patentees to the Government of Canada, in addition to price reductions.