§ Mr. Harvey
To ask the Secretary of State for Health what recent assessment he has made of the cost of pharmaceuticals in the United Kingdom, the United States of America and other European Union countries; and if he will make a statement. 618W
§ Ms Stuart
Regular comparisons are made between the prices of medicines in these countries and the results published in "The Pharmaceutical Price Regulation Scheme: Report to Parliament". The most recent edition of this (the fourth report) was published in December 2000. Copies are in the Library and the text is also on the Department of Health website at www.doh.gov.uk/pprs/ pprs-reports.htm.
The medicines compared (which are those with the highest sales to the National Health Service) are branded rather than generic, because in many countries unbranded generic medicines are not available.