The price for pharmaceutical products is up over 14% y-o-y. According to Geostat, only price of pain-relief medicines is grown by 28.3% in April.
The Georgian pharmaceutical market is largely dependent on imports. Last year, Georgia bought 327.1 USD million worth of medicines. Therefore, pharmaceutical companies change medicine price depending on the exchange rate of foreign currency.
Giorgi Gotsadze, President of Curatio International Foundation names 4 factors, which increase medicine price:
1.Georgia depends on imports. Up to 95% of the consumed drugs are imported. As soon as something happens to the GEL exchange rate, it is reflected on the medicine price.
2.The second factor is that imported medicines are not replaced by promoting of local production during these years.
3.The third factor that drives the high price is consumption and unhealthy competition, as pharmacies are opened side by side. According to Giorgi Gotsadze, the state tries to keep the pharmacies 5-6 km away from each other, so that the money invested in those pharmacies not to be reflected on the medicine price.
4.The next factor is the lowest-paid doctors. The country has more physicians than it needs. Consequently, the doctor receives a low income. According to Gotsadze, doctors compensate their low income with commission fees paid by pharmaceutical companies for prescribing more drugs.
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