Hi! I'm An from Digile

is patience a moral duty?

published6 months ago
2 min read

Hi Reader,

Patience is a moral duty”, my grandmother always said.


standing on the train platform

sweating and gasping for air after I’ve been running like a fool

seeing my train leaving right in front of me

knowing I’ll have to wait that extra hour due to deficient railway service

I must admit I sometimes lose my patience.

Fortunately, some Spotify playlists and podcasts act as instant pain relievers in those cases.

Sadly, this is less trivial for patients with severe life threatening conditions, for whom a life saving treatment is sometimes lying ahead but just out of reach.

741 days

…will have been the waiting time for mucoviscidosis patients to get their Kaftrio treatment reimbursed in Belgium, as has it been announced for September. Way above the Belgian average for newly reimbursed drugs. Somehow, Kaftrio can be considered an exceptional case, as the negotiation process rather had the character of a telenovela, with massive media attention and Vertex even leaving the negotiation room at the end of June.

According, in Belgium, there are on average 534 days between obtaining the market authorisation and the RIZIV/INAMI reimbursement. With those numbers, Belgium lands in 23rd place; this process is faster in almost all Western European countries. The Belgian procedure is very tedious and time-consuming, and could certainly be optimized. The “farmapact” with ongoing discussions between the pharmaceutical industry and the Belgian government will hopefully pave the way to a more lean approach. Besides, strategic factors come into play as well, as higher start prices can sometimes be obtained in other European countries, serving as a reference and delaying the initiation of a CTG/CRM procedure in our country.

And how are innovative medicines actually doing in Belgium?

Digile conducted an analysis of the 20 original innovative medicines reimbursed in Belgium since January 2022 up till now. We excluded extensions of indications. For this set, the median time from EMA authorization to RIZIV/INAMI reimbursement was 671 days. As of today, 3 out of the 20 drugs are not yet commercialised in Belgium. Ryeqo was most recently launched in August, and Kaftrio the reimbursement and commercialisation have not yet been officially announced in the Belgian prescription database SAM.

Want to see the details for specific drugs in your domain? Check out the table below.

As we are constantly monitoring changes in the drug market with our Farmanaut solutions and services, Digile can produce insightful and daily actualized reports for trends and novelties in the Belgian and European market in a glimpse.

Farmanaut integrates:

  • all Belgian official drug data
  • EMA EPAR data
  • INAMI/RIZIV data

to produce daily actualized overviews and timelines of events, for which you can set up proactive notifications.

Have a nice day,

An from Digile
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ps: Do you have thoughts to share about this report or would you like to answer another question? Let us know in reply and we’ll see if we can help you out or make an insightful post on our LinkedIn page about it.