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The Estonian medicinal products market in fourth quarter 2016

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Estonian drug statistics is based on wholesalers’ reports. The statistics of human medicinal products includes sales to general and hospital pharmacies and to other institutions, i.e. state and scientific institutions. The statistics of veterinary medicinal products includes sales to general and veterinary pharmacies, veterinarians and to other institutions. The medicinal products market is expressed in wholesale prices which includes the price of the manufacturer and wholesaler’s mark-up and does not include the VAT.

Human medicines

In the fourth quarter of 2016 the medicinal products market increased 9.26% reaching to 74.2 million euros. Estonian human medicines market in fourth of previous five years shows an increasing trend:

Sales to general pharmacies were 52.3 million euros, sales to hospital pharmacies 21.3 million euros and sales to other institutions 0.6 million euros.

Prescription sales covered most of the medicinal products market, being 62.8 million euros. The turnovers of over the counter sales and hospital package sales were 10.9 million euros and 0.5 million euros.

Based on ATC classification, the most sold medicines by turnover, were antineoplastic and immunomodulating agents (14.1  million euros), antiinfectives for systemic use  (11.5 million euros) and alimentary tract and metabolism medicines (8.9 million euros).

Defined Daily Dose (DDD) is the assumed average dose per day for the drug used in its main indication in adults.

According to DDD/1000/day* the most consumed medicines in the fourth quarter of 2016 were cardiovascular system drugs (417 DDD/1000/day), alimentary tract and metabolism drugs (175 DDD/1000/day) and nervous system medicines (122 DDD/1000/day).

On the basis of DDD/1000/day the most consumed active substances in the fourth quarter of 2016 were:

Active substance




Acetylsalicylic acid +Magnesium oxide


















*Defined Daily Dose per thousand inhabitants a day (DDD/1000/day) expresses the proportion of the population within a defined area treated daily with certain drugs. This methodology allows analyze the consumption of medicines and compare it between countries. The DDD system cannot be applied to all medicines, mainly due to very individual dosing and different administrations. Therefore some ATC groups, such as dermatologicals, antineoplastic and immunomodulating agents as well as herbal medicinal products have not been assigned DDDs.

In the fourth quarter of 2016, 3600 different medicinal preparation packages of 1176 active substances were marketed in Estonia.

Veterinary medicines

The Estonian veterinary medicinal products market was 2.73 million euros in wholesale prices in the fourth quarter of 2016. Compared to the fourth quarter in 2015, the turnover increased 11%.

Almost 90% of veterinary medicines were sold to the veterinarians or to the agricultural companies represented by a veterinarian, 6% to the veterinary pharmacies, 3% to the general pharmacies and 1% to other institutions (generally state- and scientific institutions).

The most sold medicines by turnover were antiinfectives for systemic use (0.85 million euros), immunologicals (0.55 million euros) and antiparasitic products (0.40 million euros). Compared the data of fourth quarters of the last three years the turnover of immunologicals, antiparasitic products, musculo-sceletal system and alimentary tract increased. The turnover of antiinfectives decreased in 2015 and increased in 2016 compared to the previous year.