[Ip-health] New Zealand measures to prevent parallel trade in medicine from NZ to US | Knowledge Ecology International

Jamie Love james.love at keionline.org
Sun Sep 4 09:13:21 PDT 2011


New Zealand measures to prevent parallel trade in medicine from NZ to US

Wikileaks has published 28 cables, dated July 13, 2004 to February 9, 2010,
from the US Embassy in Wellington, New Zealand that mention pharmaceuticals
(See list here: http://keionline.org/node/1231)

One of the cables discusses in detail the efforts of the New Zealand
government to prevent pharmaceutical products that are sold in New Zealand
from being parallel traded into the U.S. market. There are several
interesting points made in the cable. Here are a few highlights:

*  PHARMAC's prescription drug prices are roughly 40 percent less than those
in the United States.
The perception that New Zealand maintains high safety standards for
medications makes its more affordable drugs even more attractive to U.S.

*  So far, however, only a trickle of U.S.-made drugs is brought to New
Zealand and then re-imported back to the United States, according to PHARMAC
and the industry. That amount is expected to remain insignificant.

* PHARMAC is concerned that if the industry were to discover large flows of
its products being re-imported back to the United States, it would restrict
pharmaceutical supplies in New Zealand and raise their prices.

*  The Ministry of Health is working to change the law to restrict doctors
to prescribing medications only for patients who are physically present in
New Zealand or for New Zealand residents who are temporarily traveling


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