The Health Sector:
the Greek Organisation for Medicines,
Academia, R&D and the pharmaceutical industry

In the homeland of the Hippocratic Oath, strong medical and
pharmaceutical heritage meets modern expertise,
creating a unique mixture of motives to work and innovate.

The Greek Organisation for Medicines

EMA’s NCA (The National Organisation for Medicines – EOF) is efficiently managed, staffed and structured. EOF has been acknowledged for its smooth and efficient cooperation with EMA.

EOF ensures public health and safety with regards to health related products marketed in Greece through:

  • Evaluation and authorization of new, safe, and efficient medicinal products
  • Monitoring post-marketing product quality, safety and efficacy
  • Ensuring compliance with respective frameworks for product manufacturing procedures, clinical trials and products’ marketing
  • Developing and promoting medical and pharmaceutical research

Strong academic environment

Greece hosts more than 40 life sciences related schools, producing some of the most highly skilled scientists worldwide every year. The Medical School and the Pharmacy School of the National and Kapodistrian University of Athens (EKPA) are two of the oldest and most reputed.

Athens Medical and Pharmacy Schools have been operating for 170 years and their contribution to the areas of Education, Research, Clinical Medicine and Public Health has been invaluable.

According to EUROSTAT in 2014 Greece ranked

among EU-28
in terms of both
physicians and dentists
licensed to practice
terms of professionally
active pharmacists
(per 100,000

Athens Medical School has 26 laboratories and 60 Clinics in hospitals (including 3 University hospitals) and Athens Pharmacy School has three Research Departments that have to demonstrate several success stories and several international collaborators from the Pharmaceutical and Agro-food Industry, as well as representatives of well-known Academic and Research Institutes.

These institutions are also actively co-working towards the integration of the research potential of the University of Athens Cancer Research Group in the European research area.

Its laboratories are fully equipped with state-of-the-art instruments required for the implementation of its research activities.

In addition, Greece hosts two veterinary schools, one in Thessaloniki and one in Karditsa. Approximately 3,000 licensed veterinarians are working in Greece.

Athens Medical and Pharmacy Schools
have been operating for 170 years
and their contribution in the areas of Education,
Research, Clinical Medicine and Social Welfare
has been invaluable, not only at a national level
but also across the world.

Research and Innovation in the area of Health Science and Pharmaceuticals is a top priority for Greece. Following this commitment Greece dedicates 12.2% of its annual State Funding for R&I in this area, a percentage significantly higher than the EU average (9.5%).

Moreover, pharmaceutical industries invest about €30 mil. per year in more than 80 research programs, in cooperation with Greek or foreign research and academic institutions, aiming to develop new medicines, medicines combinations, modified medicines administration, as well as to discover new indications of existing ones. Significant activity takes place in bio-equivalence studies and to a number of studies towards the discovery of innovative new medicines.

11,491 researchers
in health and pharmaceuticals sector work in Universities, private companies but also in a number of private and public research and technological institutes all around Greece, providing services of great quality and added value to health service providers and the pharmaceutical industry. The high quality of the sector related research activities is testified by the large number of publications (4,490 in 2014) but also the impact factor, which is higher than the world average and with increasing trends (1.09 compared to 1).

Excellent Research
and Technological Institutes

Within Athens metropolitan area there are several private research centers and
8 public research and technological institutes

3 of which exclusively concern the Health and Pharmaceuticals sector (Hellenic Pasteur Institute; Biomedical Sciences Research Center “Alexander Fleming”; Biomedical Research Foundation of Academy of Athens).

The above mentioned institutions, provide a highly stimulating research environment, striving to transform the high expertise developed to high quality advanced services provided to academia. Their excellence is directly related to the availability of state-of-the art technology in their labs, highly qualified personnel, a great number of visiting investigators attracted from abroad, as well as to availability of highly skilled scientists working in collaborating and supporting sectors, such as IT (Bioinformatics), Chemical Research, etc.
HPI technological Units and bioindustry.

Indicative of the Greek government’s commitment
to high quality Research and Innovation is the recent
announcement of the establishment of the
“Hellenic Research and Innovation Institute”

A flexible and independent institution that will manage the resources of a new Fund, exclusively intended for the support of new scientists, research facilities and equipment and research programs to be implemented in the Universities and the Research Centers of the country.

Relocating EMA to Athens-Greece would also mean bringing the Seat of the Agency to the older EU-Member State that, due to its geographical position, is in the immediate neighborhood of EU accession countries, with which the EMA has a specific and important cooperation framework.

The European Medicines Agency takes part in several projects to foster links with European Union enlargement countries, to lay the foundations of future co-operation in its networks.

Top world destination for
sector related conferences and conventions

Numerous important health and pharmaceuticals related scientific conferences take place in Greece, reflecting the significance that the country places on scientific innovation.

This great number of national and international medical conferences that are conducted with great success every year attract scientists, visitors and their families from all over the world, offering them a firsthand experience of the country’s conference hosting and scientific capacities.

The Domestic
Pharmaceutical Industry

Domestic Pharmaceutical Companies formulate a dynamic sector which is specialized in the development and production of both top-quality branded generics and original medicinal products.

Briefly in numbers


place among the Greek industry
in terms of total turnover

€ 6.1 billion

per year contribution to GDP


the level of the added value of the medicines
manufacturing industry in the whole
manufacturing sector


companies operating in medicines
manufacturing and importing


modern production units with state-of-the-art
technology and advanced quality
control systems


highly skilled and specialized employees


jobs with direct or indirect relation to the
pharmaceutical sector

over 2,000

more job vacancies within the
next five years


increased the total number
of employees over the past 5 years, in the leading
domestic pharmaceutical industries


for 2015, employment in the
pharmaceutical sector accounted
for 0.4% of total employment in the
Greek economy, while the share in
the total manufacturing sector was
4%, placed above EU-28 average.

2nd more exportable product

of the country
with € 1 bn. in pharmaceutical exports to
over 100 countries

€ 150 m

in R&D investment, accounting for 18% of
the total R&D expenditure in Greece


and more international patents