Grenada residents spend half a million euros a day to buy medicine

The people of Grenada have spent more than 103 million euros to buy medicines at the pharmacy until August this year, which represents a spending of almost half a million per day. This is up 2.69% from the same period in 2022, when there were about 100 million, according to data provided to IDEAL by BidaPharma, which has the largest market share in the province. However, 1% less units have been sold. On the other hand, if we look only at the ten most consumed drugs in Grenada, their sales have increased by 5.2% this year, exceeding one million units. This figure does not include medicines given in hospitals.

The best-selling drug was Nolotil, an analgesic for pain, with 381,755 boxes sold and a wide margin with second place on the list. Adiro then sold more than 112,000 units by August 20 to prevent thrombi formation and blockage of arteries.

It is surprising that the third place belongs to the worrisome lexatins. However, compared to 2022, its sales have declined by 15.7%. «It is a mild, non-hypnotic pure anxiolytic – it is not prescribed for sleep – that is used in transient anxiety problems. It is the only substance whose active ingredient is bromazepam, which is why it appears in one of the top spots. If we look at other drugs that are sold by several brands, not a single drug brings in so many sales”, explains Juan Eloy Jiménez, President of the College of Pharmacists of Granada.

The drug that has seen the biggest increase in sales is furosemide, a diuretic, after its price was halved

In fourth place is furosemide, a diuretic used for blood pressure problems and which also has an interesting case: it has seen an increase of 131% compared to the previous year. This is because last year the company UXA Pharma has reduced its price since it offered Health a 53% discount to “gain market share”. As a result, it is directly placed in the top 10 drugs.

The fifth and sixth most consumed are Algidol and Enantium, two pain relievers. Next on the list is Omeprazole, which has experienced the largest growth of over 20% from 2022 to 2023. Ventolin inhaler closes the list, which is used to treat bronchial spasms associated with asthma or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. , Syntrom, an anticoagulant; and paracetamol, another analgesic.

Although these are the ten most commonly bought in pharmacies, X-ray changes slightly if we analyze the consumption by drug groups, that is, by active ingredient. In this case, three of the four best sellers are pain relievers. Furthermore, the total number of units delivered is 1.68 million, showing a decrease of 3.1% between January 1 and August 20, 2023, as compared to the same period last year.

chronic patient

With regard to the profile of the buyers, the majority are people above 65 years of age suffering from chronic diseases and they mainly buy pain relievers. The exception would be Ventolin, which is used interchangeably at all stages of life. As the president of Granada Pharmacists points out, this will be the trend of the future: the aging of the population is directly related to the increase in chronically ill patients.

Juan Eloy distinguishes between three main groups of drugs. First, painkillers, such as Nolotil or Paracetamol. Second, preventive medications, which many polymedicated patients take, such as Adiro, for vascular risk. Both groups are widely consumed by the elderly. Finally, there are what are commonly known as ‘rescue drugs’ that are usually kept in the medicine cabinet, such as Ventolin.

Revised Prices

In terms of price, Juan Eloy argues that many of the products included in the top 10 best sellers are generic and cost a few euros; Also remember that “prices are reviewed regularly.” For example, now it has been reduced in August. The user notices it, ”he insists. The drug companies themselves are responsible for setting prices, as well as the Spanish Agency for Medicines and Health Products (Aemps). On the other hand, pharmacists say that those whose cost may be higher than priority are the so-called innovative drugs, which come out after long research. “Usually they are distributed in the hospital and they cost more until they are decontamination,” says Juan Eloy Ramirez.

“There was a drop in prices in August,” says the president of Granada Pharmacists.

Lastly, it ensures that the consumption of drugs is becoming increasingly responsible due to the efforts of a “conscious society” and pharmaceutical professionals. “They do a very important job of promoting that rational use and making sure that the patient will make good use of it. This has a direct impact on health expenditure,” he added. Furthermore, the pharmacist reminds that most of the products on the list require a doctor’s prescription, so they cannot be purchased without a doctor’s prescription.

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