Life sciences & health care in Belgium

Patients are at the centre of the Life Sciences & Health Care universe; however, the number of stakeholders and interactions is particularly large and diverse, which multiplies the challenges.

diagram LSHC

Belgium is a“Pharma-Valley” in Europe!

  • In 2009, total market value (ex-factory price) in Belgium stood up to 4,4 Billion EUR, i.e. 1.3% of the national GDP. The total export amounts to 37.5 Billion EUR, or 14% of the total Belgian exportations
  • Belgium has a strong Health Care system with following attributes:
    • Freedom of choice for patients (a patient can choose to go to a GP or directly to a specialist) with a high density of Health Care professionals and hospital beds and virtually no waiting lists.
    • Strong government interference through the National Institute for Sickness and Invalidity Insurance, commonly known as INAMI/RIZIV
    • Independent medical practice based on fee-for-service reimbursement, managed by non-profit statutory sickness funds known as mutualités/mutualiteiten
  • R&D spending from the total Pharma industry reached 1.8 Billion EUR in 2009, or 24,3% of the private sector spending, and with more than 4700 researchers in 2007 represents 21,5% of the total R&D employment in the private sector.

Source: Witboek Life Sciences Industry Vlaanderen,