Health authority activities to enhance the quality and efficiency of medicine use and their impact

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In the previous commentary paper, we discussed the growing expenditure on medicines due to the continued launch of new premium priced medicines, especially for oncology and orphan diseases, growth in non-communicable diseases (NCDs) assisted by aging populations with associated increased use of medicines as well as changing clinical guidelines.[1-5] As a result, global sales of medicines are likely to exceed $1.5 trillion by 2023, with compounded annual growth rates estimated at 3 to 6% per annum.[6] This is a concern not only for high income countries struggling to fund new premium priced medicines for cancer and orphan diseases but also for lower- and middle-income countries (LMICs) where expenditure on medicines can account for over 60% of total healthcare expenditure affecting key issues such as access and affordability.[7-9] There are also concerns how governments can attain or retain universal healthcare given ongoing pressures on available resources, enhanced by the COVID-19 pandemic and its unintended consequences, and concomitantly strive to reduce morbidity and mortality of NCDs as part of agreed Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).[10-13] In addition, address concerns with rising rates of antimicrobial resistance (AMR) increasing morbidity, mortality, and costs, as a result of inappropriate prescribing and dispensing of antibiotics especially in ambulatory care
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)11-16
Number of pages6
JournalAdvances in Human Biology
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 6 Feb 2021


  • health authorities
  • prescribing
  • demand-side measures
  • generics
  • biosimilars
  • new medicines
  • managed entry agreements
  • self-purchasing antibiotics


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