United Kingdom OTC Drugs Market - Growth, Trends, COVID-19 Impact, and Forecasts (2022 - 2027)

The United Kingdom OTC Drugs Market is Segmented by Product Type (Cough, Cold, and Flu Products, Analgesics, Dermatology Products, Gastrointestinal Products, and Other Product Types), Route of Administration (Oral, Topical, and Parenteral), and Distribution Channel (Retail Pharmacy, Hospital Pharmacy, and E-Pharmacy). The report offers the value (in USD million) for the above segments.

Market Snapshot

Market Snapshot
Study Period: 2019-2027
Base Year: 2021
CAGR: 7.2 %

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Market Overview

The United Kingdom OTC drugs market is projected to register a CAGR of 7.2% during the forecast period (2022-2027).

The United Kingdom OTC drugs market is impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. In the context of the COVID-19 government organization, research institutes, and many biotech and pharmaceutical firms are focusing on the effective and rapid technologies for the fast diagnosis of COVID-19 and to develop the vaccines/new therapeutics to overcome the current situation. Furthermore, there is a rising demand for over-the-counter drugs during the pandemic, thereby driving the market growth. For instance, in December 2021, Pfizer Inc. announced an additional agreement with the United Kingdom (UK) government to supply an additional 2.5 million treatment courses for its investigational candidate PAXLOVID (nirmatrelvir [PF-07321332] tablets and ritonavir tablets), subject to local authorization. This is in addition to the 250,000 treatment courses previously contracted by the UK Government, pending authorization and recommendation for use, bringing the full amount of treatment courses to 2.75 million. Hence, the market is likely to grow in the upcoming future.

OTC drugs are commonly used for the treatment and management of flu, colds, headaches, fever, toothache, musculoskeletal injuries, and disorders, as well as menstrual cramps. The issues related to pain are the major reasons for the self-medication of OTC drugs. The major OTC drugs used in the United Kingdom are acetaminophen and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), like Aspirin, naproxen (Aleve), and ibuprofen (Advil). Moreover, the presence of the key market players offering a wide range of over-the-counter products, and companies' interest in developing and launching the OTC drugs to gain a major market share is expected to drive the market growth in the country. Furthermore, the government has encouraged self-medication by consumers, including the switch of classification of some medicines from “prescription-only” to “pharmacy” (POM to P), where a product can be recommended and sold by a pharmacist without a prescription. For instance, in April 2022, the government of the UK updated the list of new UK medicines reclassified from prescription-only medicine (POM) to the pharmacy (P) medicine and P medicine to general sales list (GSL) Medicine from 1991 to 31 March 2022. The list includes medicines such as IBUPROFEN, PIROXICAM, and AMOROLFINE (BASE) among others. As per the Centre for Ageing Better report 2019, in the United Kingdom, people above 65 years of age were high, there were more than 11.9 million people aged 65 years and above, with 3.2 million aged 80 years and above and 1.6 million aged 85 and over. The number of people aged 65 years and above is expected to increase by more than 40% within 20 years. The rising geriatric population who are highly susceptible to suffering from several diseases, such as chronic pain, will drive the over-the-counter drugs market during the forecast period. Hence, owing to the aforementioned factors, the over-the-counter (OTC) drugs market is expected to have a notable growth rate in the United Kingdom during the forecast period.

Scope of the Report

As per the scope, over-the-counter (OTC) drugs are referred to as nonprescription drugs. These medicines can be bought by individuals without a doctor's prescription and are safe for consumption without a doctor's consent. The United Kingdom OTC Drugs Market is Segmented by Product Type (Cough, Cold, and Flu Products, Analgesics, Dermatology Products, Gastrointestinal Products, and Other Product Types), Route of Administration (Oral, Topical, and Parenteral), and Distribution Channel (Retail Pharmacy, Hospital Pharmacy, and E-Pharmacy). The report offers the value (in USD million) for the above segments.

By Product Type
Cough, Cold, and Flu Products
Analgesics
Dermatology Products
Gastrointestinal Products
Other Product Types
By Route of Administration
Oral
Topical
Parenteral
By Distribution Channel
Retail Pharmacy
Hospital Pharmacy
E-Pharmacy

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Key Market Trends

Analgesics are Expected to Hold a Significant Market Share Over the Forecast Period

OTC analgesics are commonly used for the treatment and management of headaches, fever, toothache, musculoskeletal injuries, and disorders, as well as menstrual cramps. The issues related to pain are the major reasons for the self-medication of analgesics. ​The major OTC analgesics include acetaminophen (Tylenol) and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), like aspirin, naproxen (Aleve), and ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin).​ One of the most common complaints about the use of analgesic self-medication is a headache. Therefore, the rising trend of self-medication with OTC analgesics, such as paracetamol, among children and adolescents is posing an important public health concern. Numerous studies have revealed that the use of OTC drugs is twice as common as that of prescribed medication. With continuous growth in the aging population, the prevalence rates for the various disease are also expected to rise, which is propelling the market studied. The aging population is more likely to have arthritis, bone and joint disorders, and other chronic disorders associated with pain. According to the National Health Service, in 2019, there were about 28 million people in the United Kingdom (UK) suffering from chronic pain, with around 10-14% experiencing moderate to severely disabling pain. A strong foothold of the key players may also stimulate the growth of the market studied. In 2019, Pfizer Inc. announced the closing of its joint venture with GlaxoSmithKline PLC. The combined brand portfolio may form the world's largest OTC business, with leadership positions in pain relief, respiratory and vitamins, minerals and supplements, and therapeutic oral health.

Hence, owing to the above-mentioned factors, the analgesics segment is expected to witness significant growth over the forecast period.

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Competitive Landscape

The United Kingdom OTC drugs market is fragmented and consists of several major players. In terms of market share, a few of the major players are currently dominating the market. Some of the companies which are currently dominating the market are Pfizer Inc, Bayer plc, Perrigo Company plc, GlaxoSmithKline PLC, and Johnson & Johnson among others.

Recent Development

  • In November 2021, Supra relaunched Drapolene 4-In-1 Antiseptic Cream in the UK. It prevents & treats nappy rash, soothes skin, and forms a protective barrier against external irritants at every nappy change.
  • In September 2021, GlaxoSmithKline Consumer Healthcare launched Otrivine Natural Daily Nasal Wash. The nasal wash’s “100% natural ingredients” include Aloe Vera powder, seawater, and purified water.

Table of Contents

  1. 1. INTRODUCTION

    1. 1.1 Study Assumptions and Market Definition

    2. 1.2 Scope of the Study

  2. 2. RESEARCH METHODOLOGY

  3. 3. EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

  4. 4. MARKET DYNAMICS

    1. 4.1 Market Overview

    2. 4.2 Market Drivers

      1. 4.2.1 Increasing Self-medication

      2. 4.2.2 Increasing Number of Product Launches

    3. 4.3 Market Restraints

      1. 4.3.1 High Probability of OTC Drug Abuse and Lack of Awareness

    4. 4.4 Porter's Five Force Analysis

      1. 4.4.1 Threat of New Entrants

      2. 4.4.2 Bargaining Power of Buyers/Consumers

      3. 4.4.3 Bargaining Power of Suppliers

      4. 4.4.4 Threat of Substitute Products

      5. 4.4.5 Intensity of Competitive Rivalry

  5. 5. MARKET SEGMENTATION (Market Size by Value – USD million)

    1. 5.1 By Product Type

      1. 5.1.1 Cough, Cold, and Flu Products

      2. 5.1.2 Analgesics

      3. 5.1.3 Dermatology Products

      4. 5.1.4 Gastrointestinal Products

      5. 5.1.5 Other Product Types

    2. 5.2 By Route of Administration

      1. 5.2.1 Oral

      2. 5.2.2 Topical

      3. 5.2.3 Parenteral

    3. 5.3 By Distribution Channel

      1. 5.3.1 Retail Pharmacy

      2. 5.3.2 Hospital Pharmacy

      3. 5.3.3 E-Pharmacy

  6. 6. COMPETITIVE LANDSCAPE

    1. 6.1 Company Profiles

      1. 6.1.1 Bayer plc

      2. 6.1.2 GlaxoSmithKline PLC

      3. 6.1.3 Johnson & Johnson

      4. 6.1.4 Perrigo Company plc

      5. 6.1.5 Pfizer Inc

      6. 6.1.6 Reckitt Benckiser Group PLC

      7. 6.1.7 Sanofi

    2. *List Not Exhaustive
  7. 7. MARKET OPPORTUNITIES AND FUTURE TRENDS

**Competitive Landscape covers- Business Overview, Financials, Products and Strategies and Recent Developments

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Frequently Asked Questions

The United Kingdom OTC Drugs Market market is studied from 2019 - 2027.

The United Kingdom OTC Drugs Market is growing at a CAGR of 7.2% over the next 5 years.

Pfizer Inc, Bayer plc, Perrigo Company plc, GlaxoSmithKline PLC, Johnson & Johnson are the major companies operating in United Kingdom OTC Drugs Market.

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