, Volume 31, Issue 2, pp 173–174 | Cite as

Comparing Subsidized Access to Medicines Across Payer Systems

  • Michael WonderEmail author
  • Richard Milne

Dear Editor,

We note the original research article by Ragupathy et al. [1] from New Zealand (NZ) on access to licensed and subsidized medicines under single-payer systems in the USA, the UK, Australia and NZ published in the November 2012 issue of PharmacoEconomics. This cross-sectional study found that the UK NHS subsidized the most entities, the newest entities and the most innovative entities; and that NZ’s Pharmaceutical Management Agency (PHARMAC) subsidized the fewest entities, the oldest entities and the fewest innovative entities [1]. Similarly, we reported 12 months earlier that in the past decade, public access to new medicines in NZ was more limited and delayed compared with Australia, which we attributed largely to a capped pharmaceuticals budget [2]. Unfortunately, these authors did not cite our paper.

We understand the authors’ motivation to include the USA as a study country. The challenge is to find a representative payer system, as the USA has many payers and no true...


Rabies Pharmaceutical Benefit Scheme Pharmaceutical Benefit Advisory Committee Australian Pharmaceutical Benefit Scheme Medicine Price Review 
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No funding was received for this letter and no other individual or organization was involved. The authors have no conflicts of interest.


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Wonder Drug ConsultingCronullaAustralia
  2. 2.Health Outcomes AssociatesAucklandNew Zealand
  3. 3.School of Population HealthUniversity of AucklandAucklandNew Zealand

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