We present a brief overview of the health care system in Hungary, focusing particularly on the pricing and reimbursement procedures of medicines. The National Institute of Health Insurance Fund Management is responsible for the administration of the health insurance system and public reimbursement of health technologies. There are two major types of reimbursement techniques in the outpatient care: the normative reimbursement is applied to all physicians and may be used for all indications listed in the Summary of Product Characteristics, and the indication-linked reimbursement is applied only to specialists who are authorized to prescribe the drug. Pharmaceuticals used in the inpatient care are fully reimbursed and are financed through diagnosis-related groups. Several cost-containment measures such as external price referencing and internal price referencing with blind bidding are applied. Proposing managed entry agreements is a mandatory condition for reimbursing innovative pharmaceuticals. Compared with other countries in the region, the implementation of health technology assessment has a relatively long history in Hungary. The health technology assessment body critically evaluates reimbursement submissions of pharmaceuticals, simple medical devices, and complex medical devices such as hospital technologies.
András Inotai Marcell Csanádi András Harsányi Bertalan Németh