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Current issue #9, 2018

20.03.2018

Pharma retailers size up a drogerie format

While food retail chains rekindle dreams of adding a pharmacy product range, pharma retailers have already struck back. Erkapharm Group has announced launching Ozerki drogeries. This piece of news has both sparked interest and got mixed reaction of the professional community. Sceptics remind that all attempts to master this format by pharmacies have failed so far. However, there are also optimists who believe that one of the top Russian pharmacy chains is likely to be a success in the new niche.

[PharmVestnik # 09, 20/03/2018, p. 1, cont’d p. 2]

// Health Management

Nine billion rubles to be additionally allocated for orphan drug procurement in 2019

The issue of funding part of the rare diseases from the so-called List 24 from the federal budget is still pending solution. However, according to Council of Federation Chairperson Valentina Matvienko, in case of centralized procurement of orphan drugs, their cost may be reduced by 30%. She also pointed out that about 9B RUB would be additionally allocated for the treatment of rare diseases in 2019. Experts believe that any decision, be it centralized purchasing or additional co-funding, will be beneficial for patients. The best-case scenario will be the adoption of both decisions.

[PharmVestnik # 09, 20/03/2018, p. 3]

// Pharma Retailing

Small pharmacy chains may survive through uniting

In recent years, the number of pharmacy associations has been growing. They do not only compete with large pharmacy chains but also fight with one another. Market players believe that there is future in store for such alliances as they are emerging as a real power capable of dictating their own terms to drug manufacturers. Top pharmaceutical retailers have to admit that pharmacy associations are strong competitors.

[PharmVestnik # 09, 20/03/2018, p. 4]

// Pharma Retailing

‘Georgian team’ quit Pharmacy Chain 36.6

As partners, Vladimir Kintsurashvili, Ivan Saganelidze, Temur Shakaya, and Igor Zhibarovsky have managed to substantially develop the 36.6 business. However, despite a business model modification, they, like former owners, counted on loaned funds and, most likely, have lost. According to insider information, none of the four businesspeople has not been associated with Pharmacy Chain 36.6 since 1 March 2018. Vladimir Kintsurashvili’s team was at the helm for 4 years.

[PharmVestnik # 09, 20/03/2018, p. 6]

// Government Supported Programs

Government guarantees in demand among pharmaceutical manufacturers

The latest special investment contract was signed between Russia’s Ministry of Industry and Trade (Minpromtorg), Kaluga regional administration, and NovaMedica (a RUSNANO portfolio company) on 7 March. Before that, similar contracts with Minpromtorg and regional authorities were signed by Geropharm, Sanofi, AstraZeneca, and Biocad.

[PharmVestnik # 09, 20/03/2018, p. 7]

// Debt Crisis

How is the pharmacy debt crisis to be resolved?

Distributors do not intend to put up any longer with overdue payments from pharmacies. According to Protek Group owner Vadim Yakunin, the pharma retailers’ indebtedness to wholesalers reached a critical value of 1.7B USD, or about 98.6B RUB, which is nearly 10% of the Russian pharma market size. Under the circumstances, those unable to foot the bills must withdraw from the market. The question is how to make their withdrawal the least damaging for the rest of the market players.

[PharmVestnik # 09, 20/03/2018, p. 10]

// Corruption

Experts discussed ‘informal’ physician–patient relationships

Forty one percent of the respondents surveyed by Levada Center think that hospitals use corrupt practices, i.e. unofficially charge certain fees from patients for medical services. Thirty six percent of the respondents are of the same opinion in regard of outpatient clinics. The survey covered 1,570 respondents in 12 focus groups in Moscow, Kostroma, Petrozavodsk, and Tyumen.

[PharmVestnik # 09, 20/03/2018, p. 12]

// Regulatory & Legal – Pharma & Medical

Government simplifies transportation regulations for narcotic drugs and psychotropic substances

The early spring was marked with Russia’s Ministry of Health statement that regional supplies of narcotic drugs and psychotropic substances were at risk of failure. This stance was specified in the explanatory note to the draft government regulation that provides for a change in the transportation rules for the above. The document aims at simplification of the current rules to assure patient access to essential painkillers.

[PharmVestnik # 09, 20/03/2018, p. 13]

// Regulatory & Legal – Pharma & Medical

Extension of List 24 requires amendments to law

According to the Center for Clinical Research and Assessment of Medical Technologies, in 2016, regional fiscal gap in terms of orphan drug procurement was about 30%. The solution of procurement centralization issues moves slowly because of their specificity. One of possible solutions could be the extension of the List of Life-Threatening and Chronic Advanced Rare (Orphan) Diseases (List 24) that adversely affect life expectancy or cause disability.

[PharmVestnik # 09, 20/03/2018, p. 14]

// Regulatory & Legal – EAEU

Russian manufacturers fight for price advantages

The Association of the EAEU Pharmaceutical Manufacturers approached Sergey Tsyb, Deputy Minister of Industry and Trade of the Russian Federation, with a statement on inadmissibility of amendments made by the Ministry of Finance to Government Resolution No. 1289. Proceeding from these amendments, a 10% price advantage will be provided to pharmaceutical companies that offer drugs manufactured under a full-cycle process in the EAEU only if foreign companies participate in biddings, too. Thus, price advantages are made dependent on the presence of bidders offering imported drugs, which looks like arm-twisting, noted Association Chairman Dmitry CHAGIN.

[PharmVestnik # 09, 20/03/2018, p. 15]

// Regulatory & Legal – EAEU

Nonexistent EEC regulations on preclinical trials keep EAEU manufacturers on tenterhooks

The development of preclinical trial regulations for the EAEU market stirs up controversy among pharmacologists. Supporters of EU regulations believe that sacrificing lab animals to determine acute toxicity is a throwback. Experts in classical pharmacology are sure that without traditional sacrifices, it is impossible to make the right picture of intoxication, identify the mean lethal dose and some other parameters that substantiate the drug dose for Phase I clinical trials. The tension is further fueled by nonexistent by-laws that might have clarified whether companies operating on the EAEU market would face restrictions for using data of preclinical trials obtained in other regions with different laws applicable.

[PharmVestnik # 09, 20/03/2018, p. 16]

// Regulatory & Legal – EAEU

EAEU members support common drug marking regulations but are not in a hurry to implement them

While Russia moves to drug marking in quantum leaps, the other EAEU member states prefer just watching. On the one hand, they can afford not to hurry due to the framework agreement on common product marking principles and regulations in the EAEU to be ratified by November 2018 only. On the other hand, all of these countries have their own experience of getting prepared to implement a marking system, and this experience is far from being positive. Within the framework of the EAEU & CIS pharmaceutical forum, speakers for EAEU countries shared their doubts on the necessity of drug marking implementation as soon as possible.

[PharmVestnik # 09, 20/03/2018, p. 18]

// Insight – Advertising

Unconventional approach in demand in TV drug adverts

According to Publicis ProHealth, in 2017, pharma adverts accounted for 28% of the entire TV advertising segment labeled 18+. A similar rate was observed in 2016.

[PharmVestnik # 09, 20/03/2018, p. 20]

// Insight – Distributors

Rating of pharmaceutical distributors, 2017 (IQVIA)

As of 2017, the total share of the TOP10 distributors in the direct sales drug market was 70.5%, up by 1.3% year over year. The Russian pharma market grew by 8.7% overall. Of the TOP3 players (Protek, Katren, and Pulse), it was only Protek that was catching up the market at a 7.1% growth rate, while Katren posted just a 3.8% growth. Pulse was the growth champion at 14.7%. Overall, the TOP3 distributors accounted for 49.6% of the market, down by 0.4% vs. 2016, because of the declining Protek’s (-0.3%) and Katren’s (-0.8%) market shares.

[PharmVestnik # 09, 20/03/2018, pp. 22-23]

// Insight – Distributors

Rating of pharmaceutical distributors, 2017 (RNC Pharma)

For large wholesalers, the year’s results may be considered positive as most of them have grown their market shares. At the same time, market players noted debt overburden close to critical. A ‘minor key’ is added by the stagnant demand, ‘pseudodistribution’, and regular risks. Under the circumstances, Protek’s decision to toughen the terms of work with pharmacy chains is an unpopular, however a justified measure.

[PharmVestnik # 09, 20/03/2018, pp. 26-27]

// R&D – Pharma & Medical

Russian scientists still find it difficult to have their R&D products implemented

In the Volga and Southern Federal Districts, independent researcher teams are developing new techniques for diagnosing an early-stage cancer. There are two projects ready to be implemented into clinical practice. However, despite the government focus on import substitution and declaring oncology Russia’s MoH priority in 2018, it is still difficult for innovative R&D products to find their way to Russian outpatient clinics.

[PharmVestnik # 09, 20/03/2018, p. 28]

// Pharma Retailing

Fair competition is a solution

In their mind’s eye, federal pharmacy chains have already split the Russian pharmacy market. The only thing yet to be done is to conquer regional competitors. However, the latter say they won’t give up. UralOncocenter (Chelyabinsk) Deputy CEO Olga DOLGOSHEINA shares her view of the situation.

[PharmVestnik # 09, 20/03/2018, p. 29]

// Monitoring – Medical Equipment

Russian regions seek for uncostly ways to extend the life of medical equipment

In North Ossetia, on the initiative of head of the republic Vyacheslav Bitarov, State Autonomous Institution ‘Medical Equipment of Alania’ was set up. It is entrusted with maintaining a register and monitoring of performance of medical equipment reserved for health providers, consultancy services for head doctors of medical and preventive treatment facilities on equipment maintenance, and directly with equipment maintenance and repair. It is expected that this institution will help save time and budgetary funds that are in short supply in the region.

[PharmVestnik # 09, 20/03/2018, p. 29]

// Medical Manufacturing

What the Russian medical industry expects from the government

Local high-tech medical equipment accounts for at most 3% in Russian medical and preventive treatment facilities, while 84% of vital drugs are already manufactured in Russia. Experts believe that the medical industry lags behind pharma because it does not have the same support measures as pharma. The participants of the 10th All-Russia Congress of Pharmaceutical and Medical Industry Workers discussed barriers hindering the development of the local medical industry.

[PharmVestnik # 09, 20/03/2018, p. 31]

// Insight – Medical Devices & Equipment

Pharmacy sales of main medical device groups in 2017: a review

A product range is of social and economic importance both for the customer and the pharmacy itself. Therefore, pharmacies give priority to their product range, specifically to non-pharmaceutical items. Medical devices account for a large share of a pharmacy product range. These include duly authorized treatment tools, supportive medical supplies, disposable items etc. This review is based on DSM Group’s data.

[PharmVestnik # 09, 20/03/2018, pp. 32-33]

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