Deputy Health Minister of Ukraine Roman Ilyk in an interview with the Pharmacy Internet portal told about the results of the work and improvements in the Available Medicines program, the National Medications List, the introduction of 2D coding for drug quality control, interaction with the pharmaceutical market.
In early December 2018, the Government approved a Strategy for the implementation of the state policy of providing the population of Ukraine with medicines by the year 2025. There is already a clear plan of action to implement this Strategy to ensure effective medicines and their availability and create prerequisites for reducing the cost of drugs.
"The strategic objectives pursued by the Ministry of Health of Ukraine remain unchanged: increasing the economic and physical availability of medicines, providing citizens with quality drugs with proven efficacy, reducing the level of irresponsible self-treatment, and organizing proper control of drug circulation", said Roman Ilyk.
Implementation of the Available Medicines program has already entailed several positive changes, such as:
• reduction of the number of ambulance calls by 17 thousand per year;
• constant decrease in the cost of drugs included in the program, in particular, imported ones. In certain items, the price dropped by 40-50% and even by 70%. The consumption of these drugs has increased by 70% - this means that the availability of medicines for Ukrainians grew, patients began to receive systematic treatment under the supervision of a doctor.
Currently, under the Available Medicines program patients with cardiovascular diseases, bronchial asthma and type 2 diabetes can get 261 drugs, of which 59 are free of charge, while others - with a small surcharge.
The introduction of an electronic recipe and electronic document flow will enable the program to be extended to other areas.
Another important direction is the improvement of the National Medications List, which includes 427 safe and actually efficient active substances to cure common diseases. The result of the work of the updated National List is the reduction of the burden on the patient's pocket by more than UAH 1 billion. Hospitals purchased drugs that are on the list this year to the tune of over UAH 1 billion. According to the analysis of the pharmaceutical market patients spent on medication the amounts that were less by the same number.
At present, work is underway to introduce 2D coding and marking of packaging of medicines and the introduction of new models of state regulation of prices. This will enable through the use of electronic tools to control the circulation of drugs from the manufacturer or importer to the end user. At the same time, it is a long, complex policy that requires time and material input that needs to be implemented in stages.
"The Ministry seeks to form a regulatory field through a full cycle of public policy production. We are open for proposals, we organize debates, roundtables, public discussions - we try to hear each other in order to really improve the rules we follow in life and work", said the Deputy Minister, emphasizing the importance of interaction between business and the Ministry.