How much is your health worth? : A research agenda on valuation processes and markets for medicines
economic sociology_the european electronic newsletter
11 - 19 p.
Market, Medicine, Drug, Valuation, Health, Regulation
The stakes around the global and national medicines markets have been rising steadily for the last twenty years. How can one think of a market in which operate companies ranking among the most capital-intensive and profitable, states that want to provide their populations with access to essential and innovative treatments without jeopardizing their national health insurance systems, and health professionals who play a central role as market intermediaries? How can one analyse a market in which there are both innovative medicines (most often but not always) resulting from long R&D processes, protected by patents and costing up to several hundred thousand euros per patient, and generic medicines, produced on a large scale to treat "common" diseases and costing just a few euros? The purpose of this article is to present this research agenda which is both individual and collective. The first line of research is to examine the organisation and regulation of health product markets. A second line of research consists in analyzing the processes through which medicines contribution to Health and Economy is valued.