Boston, MA -- (ReleaseWire) -- 02/27/2013 -- BMI View: Slovak Prime Minister Robert Fico plans to unify the country's private and public health insurance funds into a single state-owned insurer, but there is likely to be a lengthy negotiation and a legal battle before this is realised. We do not expect either of the two private insurers - Dovera or Dutchowned Union - will surrender their businesses without a fight, with Union in particular well-placed to oppose the move, potentially invoking EU law on protectionism. The outcome of this step towards a single insurer is broadly neutral for BMI's healthcare expenditure projections and is unlikely to have any meaningful impact until 2014 at the earliest, after which it would be negative for private healthcare providers.
Headline Expenditure Projections
- Pharmaceuticals: EUR1.72bn (US$2.39bn) in 2011 to EUR1.65bn (US$2.10bn) in 2012; -3.8% in local currency terms and -12.1% in US dollar terms. Local currency forecast broadly unchanged from Q412.
- Healthcare: EUR5.92bn (US$8.23bn) in 2011 to EUR6.03bn (US$7.65bn) in 2012; +1.7% in local currency terms and -7.0% in US dollar terms. Local currency forecast slightly lower from Q412, on account of new historical trends.
- Medical devices: EUR396mn (US$550mn) in 2011 to EUR396mn (US$503) in 2012; +0.2% in local currency terms and -8.4% in US dollar terms. Local currency forecast considerably lower from Q412, on account of new historical data.
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Risk/Reward Rating: In our latest Pharmaceutical Risk/Reward Rating (RRR) matrix assessing the 20 key markets in Emerging Europe, Slovakia remains in seventh position, with an unchanged composite score. We expect its risk profile to remain above average, supported by a pro-business operating environment, although risks are on the downside, considering authorities' move to unify healthcare insurance and improve labour conditions. In the meantime, rewards will continue to be depressed by factors including fiscal austerities and low population growth.
Key Trends And Developments
- As of the start of October 2012, the State Institute for Drug Control (SUKL) charges new fees list for marketing authorisations, variations, renewals and other procedures. Marketing authorisation holders will be able to generate variable symbols for their payments from the electronic application system. Charges now stand at EUR9,600 (US$12,525) for self-standing marketing authorisations of new products. For generic medicines or medicines with a wellestablished use, the government increased the fees to EUR8,000 (US$10,437).
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