Access to Medicines in the Philippines: Overcoming the Barriers
Despite the enactment of the Cheaper Medicines Act in 2008, access to quality health care without incurring financial hardship continues to be an aspiration for many Filipinos. This Policy Note explores the barriers in access to medicines of Filipinos. It also presents key recommendations and strategies policymakers should consider in advancing universal health care in the country. Among others, the study finds an uneven access to medicines in the country due to the limited income of the poor and the lack of doctors in certain communities, even in Metro Manila. It recommends the deepening of the local medicine market to make the competition more effective in lowering prices. It also urges the provision of incentives to local government units to invest more in primary health care with medicines an integral part of their program.