DRAP’s action against overpriced medicines continues

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ISLAMABAD, Apr 15 (APP):The Ministry of National Health Services, Regulations and Coordination Monday continued its action against pharmaceutical companies on increasing rates of medicines against the approved prices of the federal government.

According to an official of the ministry, the government had decided to take strict action against unauthorized increase in prices of some medicines by pharmaceutical companies.

He said pharma industry would not be allowed to increase prices of their drugs over and above the approved maximum retail prices (MRPs).

He said action was being taken on complaints that pharmaceutical companies had increased prices of their drugs over and above the maximum retail price (MRPs) approved by the federal government. 

The official said the ministry had also directed Drug Regulatory Authority of Pakistan (DRAP) to conduct market surveys for determination of overpricing.

DRAP had been advised to monitor MRPs in the market to ensure that the same were not higher than the notified prices.

He said the authority had also directed that in case of stocks available in the retail shops or manufactured or imported prior to issuance of SROs must be sold at previous MRPs printed on the label in the manner prescribed by the Drugs (Labeling and Packing) Rules, 1986 while stickers or cuttings were not allowed.

The DRAP had allowed only nine percent MRPs increase in hardship category and only 15 percent MRPs increase of medicines determined under the Drug Pricing Policy, 2018 for drugs other than those specified in clause (a), the official added.

He added that the federal government had issued clear directions to DRAP to take strict action against pharmaceutical companies selling medicines on exorbitant prices.

He said the authority had recommended registering of cases on overpriced medicines under the Drug Act, besides imposing heavy fines with recovery of overpriced amount.

He said cases would be registered against the companies on overpricing for recovery of the overpriced amount.