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39 more drugs come under price control.

THE government has brought another 39 drugs used in treating diseases like diabetes and digestive disorders under price control as part of its efforts to make medicines more affordable.

In a statement, the National Pharmaceutical Pricing Authority ( NPPA) said that it has fixed/ revised the prices in respect of 39 formulation packs.

According to an NPPA notification, the prices of formulations, including Ciprofloxacin Hydrochloride, Cefotaxime, Paracetamol, Domperidone and Metformin+ Glimepiride, have

been fixed. The latest move will include medicines made by foreign drugmakers such as Abbott Laboratories and GlaxoSmithKline Plc as well as domestic firms such as Lupin, Cadila Healthcare and Ipca.

The new medicines are the latest addition to the price control list, which covers more than 500 drugs. In May, NPPA had capped the prices of 30 formulation packs, including those used to treat tuberculosis, diabetes and asthma. Currently, the government caps prices of essential drugs based on the simple average of all medicines in a particular therapeutic segment with sales of more than one per cent.

In other cases, companies are allowed to hike prices by only up to 10 per cent in a year.

The government had notified the Drug ( Prices Control) Order 2013, which covers 680 formulations, effective May 15, 2014, replacing the 1995 order that regulated only 74 bulk drugs.

The parliamentary standing committee on chemicals and fertilisers had in a report earlier this year said that all medicines, including life- saving drugs, are essential and should be available at affordable prices.

NPPA has imposed price ceilings on 509 formulation packs covering 348 drugs classified under the National List of Essential Medicines. But health and pharmacological experts estimate that the total number of medicine formulations available in India runs into thousands covering more than 1,400 drugs.

However, pharma companies have been complaining that the ' wide- ranging price cuts' over the past year have hit their bottom lines claiming that drug prices in the country are already among the lowest in the world.

Price control list covers more than 500 drugs

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Publication:Mail Today (New Delhi, India)
Date:Jul 17, 2015
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