Sales of non-prescription drugs continued to decline in 2020 in France according to manufacturers, lockdowns leading to a decline in seasonal pathologies, but the use of medical devices and food supplements has, conversely, increased.
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The turnover of drugs sold without medical prescription in pharmacies fell by 9.4% last year to 1.8 billion euros, after a drop of 4% a year earlier, according to the annual barometer of the French association of manufacturers in the sector (Afipa) broadcast on Thursday.
By protecting themselves from Covid-19 (wearing a mask, respecting barrier gestures and limiting movement), the French have also protected themselves from seasonal pathologies (gastroenteritis, flu, colds, etc.) and have resorted less to non-prescription drugs. , specifies Afipa.
Growth for food supplements
Unlike drugs, the market for non-prescription medical devices (which includes syringes as well as compression stockings or cosmetology products) has climbed by more than 10%, to 0.7 billion euros. euros.
In detail, self-diagnostic products saw their demand explode (+ 86%), notably with the success of the contactless thermometer.
Food supplements recorded a small growth of 1.4% over one year to reach one billion euros, with in particular a jump in supplements aimed at improving immune defenses (+ 24%).
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In this context of a pandemic, which has brought health sovereignty issues back to the forefront, Afipa pleads for a government policy "
preserving and supporting the production of non-prescription drugs, in France and in Europe
", while more 55% of non-prescription drugs sold in pharmacies are produced in France.
The association asks in particular for an incentive fiscal framework, and the promotion of the production on the territory with the creation of a label “
made in France