Consumption of drugs in Slovakia stagnates but spending grows in 2016

The total of 83.2 million packages of fully or partially reimbursed drugs were dispensed from Slovak pharmacies in 2016, a slight drop by 0.5%, the country’s National Health Information Centre said.

Public health insurance providers paid for the reimbursed medicines €911.9m in 2016, up by 4.2% year on year, with patient co-payments growing from €136.7m to €141.1m.

Slovak patients also purchased 37.5 million packages of OTC drugs last year, a slight increase of 0.6% year on year, paying for them €170.2m, up by 5.1% compared with 2015.

In addition, 5.1 million packages of fully and partially reimbursed dietary foods were dispensed by Slovak pharmacies in 2016, down by 5.8% year on year. Public health insurers paid €25.6m for the dispensed products, up by 5% year on year, while patient co-payment level remained almost unchanged at around €4m.

The number of reimbursed medical supplies dispensed to Slovak patients in 2016 amounted to 128.5 million pieces/packages, an increase by 4.6% compared with 2015. Expenses of public health insurers on prescribed medical supplies increased by 5.9% to €204.3m, while patient co-payments went up by 15.7% to €7.4m.