The Office of Health Economics is pleased to announce the appointment of two Economists. Dr Yan Feng specialises in understanding what incentives affect the behaviour of health care professionals; Arik Mordoh specialises in the economic and legal aspects of competition in the UK and EU.

Summarised in this post is a just-released OHE Occasional Paper that examines the potentially positive impact of differential pricing in Europe and the overall negative effects of international reference pricing (IRP) measures.

This OHE Seminar Briefing recounts a presentation by Prof Henry Grabowski on US Priority Review Vouchers, intended to provide an incentive for the development of drugs for tropical diseases. One of the originators of the idea, he recounts the history of its development and examines the potential impact of PRVs.

Competition in the NHS is viewed as if it must either be for everything the NHS provides to patients or for nothing. Neither extreme is likely to produce the most socially beneficial outcome. To examine the appropriate role of competition in the NHS, the OHE has established an expert Commission on Competition, expected to produce a report by year's end.

Spending by Spain’s National Health Service (NHS) on pharmaceuticals was €12.1 billion in 2010. Its market for prescription medicines is among the slowest growing in Europe, expanding by only 1% for the 12 months to September 2010 - half of the average of 2% for the five largest European markets.