Distribution strategies for pharmaceutical companies in emerging markets.
In low- and middle-income countries, health distribution systems respond to the population’s health conditions by providing consistent access to appropriate health products, medicines, and vaccines. The challenges in managing pharmaceuticals in emerging countries are very different from those in advanced economies. In developed countries, the challenge is to enhance the efficiency of spending on pharmaceuticals. In most of the emerging markets, the main challenge is how to expand the pharmaceutical market to include a larger share of the population. In emerging economies, increased spending on pharmaceuticals could lead to higher benefits in health outcomes and in some cases could also catalyze economic growth. Growth of the pharmaceutical sector and higher access to the population will depend on effective pricing, partnership, and distribution strategies being followed by pharmaceutical companies. Differential pricing and joint partnerships with local manufacturing companies would be critical to the growth of the pharmaceutical sector in emerging markets. Trends in the distribution landscape such as the emergence of prewholesalers, accredited second tier retail pharmacy programs, improved methods of information collection, new partnership models with government, and success of rural distribution strategies used by generic manufacturers need to be taken into account when designing distribution strategies.