Increasing use of over the counter drugs across Europe
- By: Claire McKenna
Consumers are becoming more willing to make healthcare decisions and experiment with alternative medicines without consulting a doctor, says a new report from independent market analysts Datamonitor.
The report, entitled Self-Medication, predicts that sales of both over the counter (OTC) medicines and vitamins, minerals, and supplements (VMS) across Europe will grow at an annual rate of 2.5% and 3.2% respectively between 2000 and 2006.1
While the report highlights a change in consumer attitudes towards health care, it recognises that volatility exists in OTC and VMS markets as consumers are highly sensitive to the results of new research. The release of the report coincides with research suggesting that taking daily doses of multivitamins probably does little good.2
“Obviously, pharmaceutical companies are like rabid dogs at the gate--they would love to make more medicines over the counter” says Neil Broome, consumer analyst and author of the report. He believes the government has