Healthcare Executives Are Facing Increasing Pricing Pressures from Governments in Latin America

This March in Miami, senior executives from leading healthcare multinational companies gathered for a debate and discussion session moderated by Frontier Strategy Group. The Miami Healthcare Breakfast Roundtable provided a unique opportunity for senior executives in the pharmaceutical and medical device industries to discuss shared challenges and solutions with each other. The executives were joined by FSG Expert Advisor and former senior executive for Merck-Serono, Philippe Crettex, for the discussion.  The morning consisted of interactive discussion and best practices exchange on the topics of regional reference pricing trends and upcoming reforms affecting the healthcare sector in Colombia. Among the key takeaways from the discussions were:

  • While pharmaceutical companies have faced the challenge of international reference pricing for years, the pricing pressures are starting to spread to the medical device industry. Simultaneously, pharmaceutical companies are dealing with governments using biosimilares as pricing references for their costly biotech products
  • Markets such as Brazil and Colombia are increasingly codifying their reference pricing requirements, while other markets implement reference pricing informally. However, healthcare officials are increasingly communicating prices across borders, creating new pricing pressures in less advanced markets
  • Senior executives believe that investing in effective government engagement efforts and improving distributor relationships are vital to attain improved results on pricing. Investing on health economics studies will also help multinationals build credibility and trust with government officials
  • Most senior executives remain optimistic about the future changes to the healthcare system in Colombia, with greater efficiency likely to come, even if the new system’s implementation increases uncertainty over the short term

Frontier Strategy Group will continue to monitor regional reference pricing trends across Latin America, as well as the evolution of the Santos administration’s reform efforts over the coming months.


Philippe CrettexPhilippe Crettex is a senior business leader in the pharmaceutical industry with 20 years of experience in Latin America.  Most recently, Mr.Crettex was Senior Vice President of Latin America for Merck-Serono and previously held country manager positions in major markets such as Brazil, Argentina, Venezuela, and Colombia for other leading global pharmaceutical companies.  Mr. Crettex has proven track record of managing change, delivering sustainable results, and developing successful management teams in Latin America.

As an FSG Expert Advisor, Mr. Crettex is available to FSG clients for consultation on many business issues with key areas of expertise including distributor selection and management, marketing, and product portfolio management.  Please contact your account manager for further information or contact us at

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