This is the latest Finnish update 2015 by the Life Sciences & Healthcare practice of Dittmar & Indrenius.
Finland enacted a new Act on Biobanks two years ago and soon thereafter several registrations of biobanks have taken place. The biobanks have stored existing and new biological samples as well as associated data. The information is now publicly available for research and utilization on certain terms.
Amendments to the medical cost reimbursement system in the Health Insurance Act are planned to enter into force on 1 January 2016. The amendments are driven by the Government's saving targets for medical costs. Proposed amendments include changes in the reimbursements for medical costs, changes in the wholesale prices of medicines included in the reference price system and a temporary payback mechanism for 2016 concerning the pharmaceutical industry.
The former Finnish government did not manage to reach an agreement of the long-awaited reform of social and health care services before the governmental elections held mid-April, and the proposal for the Finnish social and health care reform lapsed. According to a recent decision of the new government, the reform is now expected to enter into force on 1 January 2019.
As consumers and healthcare professionals become increasingly aware of their statutory rights, healthcare companies are turning to their existing patient data bases for a competitive edge.
As of January 2016 the appeal mechanisms available under the Medicines Act will be amended and the use of claim for a revised decision and requirement of leave to appeal will be expanded to ensure the efficiency of the legal proceedings. Despite of the amendment, matters which have been considered especially significant and legally demanding are not subject to a claim for a revised decision or application for leave to appeal. Such decisions include, for example, decisions regarding sales permits and registrations of medicinal products.
On January 20, 2016 the Life Sciences & Healthcare team of Dittmar & Indrenius organizes together with Pharma Industry Finland a morning seminar with two themes: 1) the results of the D&I investigation into new trends in reimbursement appeals in Finland, based on decisions made by the Supreme Administrative Court and 2) the pricing of pharmaceuticals and competition law. The seminar will be held in Finnish at the offices of Dittmar & Indrenius in Helsinki.