Kurt Richard Brekke
(), Tor Helge Holmås
() and Odd Rune Straume
Kurt Richard Brekke: Dept. of Economics, Norwegian School of Economics and Business Administration, Postal: NHH , Department of Economics, Helleveien 30, N-5045 Bergen, Norway
Tor Helge Holmås: Stein Rokkan Centre for Social Studies, Postal: Nygårdsgaten 5, , N-5015 Bergen, , Norway
Odd Rune Straume: University of Minho, Postal: Department of Economics/NIPE, , University of Minho, , Campus de Gualtar, , 4710-057 Braga, Portugal
Abstract: We study the impact of product margins on pharmacies’ incentive to promote generics instead of brand-names. First, we construct a theoretical model where pharmacies can persuade patients with a brand-name prescription to purchase a generic version instead. We show that pharmacies’substitution incentives are determined by relative margins and relative patient copayments. Second, we exploit a unique product level panel data set, which contains information on sales and prices at both producer and retail level. In the empirical analysis, we find a strong relationship between the margins of brand-names and generics and their market shares. In terms of policy implications, our results suggest that pharmacy incentives are crucial for promoting generic sales.
36 pages, July 7, 2010
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