Download Free Electronic Document

FormatFile SizeNotes
PDF file 0.2 MB

Use Adobe Acrobat Reader version 10 or higher for the best experience.

U.S. consumers generate more pharmaceutical revenue per person than Europeans do. This has led some U.S. policymakers to call for limits on U.S. pharmaceutical spending and prices. Using a microsimulation approach, we analyze the welfare impacts of lowering U.S. prices toward European levels, and how these impacts vary with key modeling assumptions. Under the assumptions most favorable to them, price controls generate modest benefits (a few thousand dollars per person). However, for the remainder of plausible assumptions, price controls generate costs that are an order of magnitude higher. In contrast, publicly financing reductions in consumer prices, without affecting manufacturer prices, delivers benefits in virtually all plausible cases.

Reprinted with permission from Health Affairs, Vol. 28, No. 1, January/February 2009. Copyright © 2008 Project HOPE-The People-to-People Health Foundation, Inc.

Originally published in: Health Affairs, Vol. 28, No. 1, January/February 2009, pp. w138-w150.

This report is part of the RAND reprint series. The Reprint was a product of RAND from 1992 to 2011 that represented previously published journal articles, book chapters, and reports with the permission of the publisher. RAND reprints were formally reviewed in accordance with the publisher's editorial policy and compliant with RAND's rigorous quality assurance standards for quality and objectivity. For select current RAND journal articles, see External Publications.

This document and trademark(s) contained herein are protected by law. This representation of RAND intellectual property is provided for noncommercial use only. Unauthorized posting of this publication online is prohibited; linking directly to this product page is encouraged. Permission is required from RAND to reproduce, or reuse in another form, any of its research documents for commercial purposes. For information on reprint and reuse permissions, please visit www.rand.org/pubs/permissions.

RAND is a nonprofit institution that helps improve policy and decisionmaking through research and analysis. RAND's publications do not necessarily reflect the opinions of its research clients and sponsors.