Big Pharma Prices Are Out Of Control

Rising Costs of Prescription Drugs in Bulgaria: Impact on Citizens' Lives. Pharmaceutical prices skyrocket by 10%, making medicine unaffordable for many. A call to lower VAT on prescription drugs to combat medicine shortage and financial burden on citizens.

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In Bulgaria, the cost of prescription drugs has risen by 10%. Nikolai Kostov, the president of the Association of Pharmacy Owners, said that medical supplies and medications are becoming more expensive.


"Price increases by several of our vendors were twofold. As a general rule, the growth in relative terms is less than 10% on average. But in certain circumstances, it's as high as 15%. It is common for us to obtain new pricing information from our suppliers and to re-evaluate items on an ongoing basis."

He claims that the use of over-the-counter medicines is on the rise. There is a clear shift from premium to inexpensive products, according to Kostov.

His theory is that lowering the threshold and maximum price of prescription drugs will be affected by lowering the VAT on them. The medicine shortage is still a problem. "Only 68 medicines are currently in limited supply, down from roughly 300 previously. There aren't enough antibiotics."


And this is affecting the right of citizens to live. For instance, consider the following case. In spite of the fact that Associate Professor Dilov has been awarded an honorary doctorate, his pension is only 590 leva. Medicine pulls in over one-fifth of all his expenditures. A BGN 5 to BGN 10 increase in the price of each of his medicines has made it impossible for him to save.

In order to save money, he eats little and grows a small vegetable garden in spite of his age and health issues. It is more expensive for him and the other peasants to get their medicine from the metropolis.

He was unsure whether or not to believe the reports that the price increase could be as high as 30% and was concerned about the state's and the Medicines Agency's potential response.

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