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Parliamentary questions
26 June 2017
Answer given by Ms Bieńkowska on behalf of the Commission

Measures regulating the prices of medicines and the organisation of the health systems as well as the delivery of care fall under the responsibility of Member States (in line with Article 168 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union(1)).

Given the Commission's limited role in this field, it encourages Member States to cooperate so as to ensure access to medicines and improve the sustainability of pharmaceutical expenditure, in line with the Commission Communication on effective, accessible and resilient health systems(2).

The only EU legislation dealing with pricing/reimbursement of medicinal products is the Transparency Directive(3) on the processing of a Member State's decision regarding the pricing/reimbursement of a medicine, but not the actual price or reimbursement level.

With regard to the recording of prices set by Member States, the Commission only supports the ‘Euripid database project’(4) which is a voluntary and Member States' driven initiative.

The Council recently called on the Member States to strengthen cost-effective use, availability, accessibility and affordability of medicines by, inter alia, promoting public procurement and the role of generics and biosimilars, appropriate price-control policies, and a rational use of medicines(5).

(2)Communication from the Commission on effective, accessible and resilient health systems; COM(2014) 215 final, of 4.4.2014.
(3)Directive 89/105/EEC.
(4)EURopean Integrated Price Information Database project http://ec.europa.eu/chafea/news/news492.html
(5)Council conclusions on EPC‐ Commission Joint Report on healthcare and long-term care in the EU, adopted by the Council (Ecofin) at its 3495th meeting, held on 8 November 2016 in Brussels.

Last updated: 28 June 2017Legal notice