According to a report published on Wednesday by OECD (Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development), Belgians spent on average 550 euros each on medication in 2012. This is above the European Union average of 350 euros that same year. The paper, entitled “Health Overview: Europe 2014”, takes stock of health and healthcare issues in 35 European countries. Belgium comes first out of these 35 when it comes to individual spending on medication. It is followed by Germany with an average of 501 euros, and by Ireland (500 euros).
Denmark, Latvia and Romania consumed fewer drugs than the other countries in 2012. Their annual spending averaged 200 euros per person.
The price of drugs increased by 3.7% in the EU between 2000 and 2009. Over the same period, the rise was 1.9% in Belgium.
The economic crisis then translated into decreased medication expenditure in Europe, a decrease of 2.2% between 2009 and 2012. This trend is slightly less visible in Belgium where spending went down by only 1.7% over that time period.