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Central Drug Regulator capped prices of 22 essential medicines with immediate effect

The Central Drug Regulator has capped the prices of 22 essential drugs, which were commonly used cancer drugs, anti-retrovirals and medicines to treat malaria, with immediate effect. These medicines are going to be available at a 45% cheaper rate than the present prices.

The price cap announced by National Pharmaceutical Pricing Authority (NPPA) would bring down maximum retail price or MRP of these medicines down by 10-45%. It is likely to impact prices of nearly 220 medicine brands containing 22 formulations.

For instance, the price of 1ml Doxorubicin HCl Pegylated Liposomal Injection -used in the treatment of different types of cancer including blood, breast, stomach, lungs, ovaries and kidneys -has been fixed at Rs 723.93, whereas a pack of Zoledronic Acid infusion – used with cancer chemotherapy to treat bone problems – will now cost Rs 3,609.13.

An official of the Central Drug Regulator department told that the average price reduction on these drugs would be at least 25% after the latest order.

The NPPA caps prices of essential drugs at the simple average of all medicines in a particular therapeutic segment with sales of more than 1%.

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