Pharmaceutical spending

Pharmaceutical spending covers expenditure on prescription medicines and self-medication, often referred to as over-the-counter products. In some countries, other medical non-durable goods are also included. Pharmaceuticals consumed in hospitals and other health care settings are excluded. Final expenditure on pharmaceuticals includes wholesale and retail margins and value-added tax. Total pharmaceutical spending refers in most countries to “net” spending, i.e. adjusted for possible rebates payable by manufacturers, wholesalers or pharmacies. This indicator is measured as a share of total health spending, in USD per capita (using economy-wide PPPs) and as a share of GDP.

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Keywords: Pharmaceuticals, self-medication, spending, pharmacists, expenditure, medical, medicines, prescriptions, hospital