Demographic and Economic Data

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Chapter: Pharmacovigilance: Spontaneous Reporting in Germany

After the reunification in 1990, Germany now has around 82 million inhabitants.


DEMOGRAPHIC AND ECONOMIC DATA

After the reunification in 1990, Germany now has around 82 million inhabitants. There are major differences in the population density with larger rural areas in the eastern federal countries and larger indus-trial regions in the west. The average income and the economic potential differ accordingly, which in turn influences the regional structure and capacity of the health system. Approximately 220 000 physicians are presently working as general practitioners or in hospitals. Another 1.8 million other medical health-care professionals contribute to the performance of the health system. There are 21 400 public pharmacies in Germany that are run completely on a private basis. Hospitals mainly have their own pharmacies, and these are not involved in the drug supply to outpatients. About E240 billion were spent in 2003 in the national health system, and around E37 5 billion are paid in total – prescriptions and self-medication – for medicinal products (corresponding to 15 6% of total expenses).

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