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Rational use of medicines in Denmark Posted 01/04/2011

Denmark was studied in detail in a report produced by the Gesundheit Österreich GmbH / Österreichisches Bundesinstitut für Gesundheitswesen (GÖG/ÖBIG – Austrian Health Institute) which surveyed measures for promoting the rational use of medicines in the 27 EU Member States.

Transparency and the inclusion of all stakeholders, e.g. doctors, pharmacists and patients, characterises the Danish pharmaceutical system. Rational use of medicines in the out-patient sector is monitored by the Danish Medicines Agency Lægemiddelstyrelsen (DKMA). For monitoring of pharmaceutical consumption, the DKMA is supported by its Institute for Rational Pharmacotherapy, which was founded in 1999.

A major tool is the electronic monitoring system (Odriprax), which allows the authorities to assess pharmaceutical consumption at both central and local levels, as well as at the level of the prescribing doctors. Doctors also have access to the Odriprax system and can compare their prescribing pattern to those of other doctors in their region. The Odriprax data are also accessible for patients who can monitor their pharmaceutical expenditure in their personal ‘medicines profile’. This is important information to them since their co-payments for medicines within one year will decrease the more they have already spent on medicines.

Denmark runs a system of mandatory generic substitution which seems very well accepted. Nevertheless patients have the option to refuse a generic without giving any reason.

Acknowledgement

This article is published with permission of the Gesundheit Österreich GmbH (GÖG)/Austrian Health Institute.

We gratefully acknowledge the support from Dr Sabine Vogler of Gesundheit Österreich GmbH / Österreichisches Bundesinstitut für Gesundheitswesen (GÖG/ÖBIG – Austrian Health Institute) to GaBI Online.

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Reference

Vogler S, Schmickl B. Rational use of medicines in Europe. Gesundheit Österreich GmbH / Österreichisches Bundesinstitut für Gesundheitswesen (GÖG/ÖBIG). February 2010.

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