The generic drug market in Japan: Will it finally take off?

Toshiaki Iizuka, Kensuke Kubo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Citations (Scopus)


Historically, brand-name pharmaceuticals have enjoyed long periods of market exclusivity in Japan, given the limited use of generics after patent expiration. To improve the efficiency of the health-care system, however, the government has recently implemented various policies aimed at increasing generic substitution. Although this has created expectations that the Japanese generic drug market may finally take off, to date, generic usage has increased only modestly. After reviewing the incentives of key market participants to choose generics, we argue that previous government policies did not provide proper incentives for pharmacies to boost generic substitution. We offer some recommendations that may help to increase generic usage.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)369-389
Number of pages21
JournalHealth Economics, Policy and Law
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2011 Jul 1
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health Policy


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