CAIRN-INT.INFO : International Edition

The austerity policies implemented in France and the UK since the 1990s, which have been ramped up following the 2008 crisis, have led to a drastic streamlining of healthcare spending, particularly for medicines, which make up a significant proportion of health expenditure. While the policies on opposite sides of the Channel may appear very different, streamlining has taken the form of increased privatization, tightening the mechanisms that control the costs of the most expensive treatments, and drives to promote cheaper medicines, including generic drugs. However, pharmaceutical companies have not particularly suffered as a result of these measures. While at first, they agreed to temporarily expand the production of generic drugs, from 2012 on they unrolled a new production model of developing innovative high-cost medicines based on biotechnology and personalized medicine. This strategy, developed with the approval of both countries’ national health systems, is based on outsourced production that reduces the company’s financial risk while making significant profits.

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