Prices of 56 medicines including those for cancer, diabetes to come down; NPPA fixes ceiling rates

New Delhi: Prices may come down of 56 important medicines used in treatment of cancer, diabetes,  bacterial infections and high blood pressure, with the government fixing their ceiling prices under the drug pricing control mechanism.

Diabetes patient
Anti-diabetes medicines are set to be cheaper.

The companies whose drugs are included for price fixation include Abbott Healthcare, Cipla, Lupin, Alembic, Alkem Laboratories, Novartis, Biocon, Intas Pharmaceuticals, Hetero Healthcare and erstwhile Ranbaxy (now Sun Pharmaceutical Industries), according to notifications by the National Pharmaceutical Pricing Authority ( NPPA).

The authority has “fixed/revised ceiling prices” of a total of 56 scheduled formulations of Schedule-I under Drugs (Price Control) Amendment Order, 2016, and retail prices of eight formulations under DPCO, 2013, according to the notifications.

“The manufacturers not complying with the ceiling price and notes specified herein-above shall be liable to deposit the overcharged amount along with interest thereon…,” the notification said.

The government fixes the prices of essential drugs based on the simple average of all medicines in a particular therapeutic segment, having sales of more than 1 per cent.

Companies are allowed to hike prices of such drugs by up to 10 per cent in a year.

The government had notified DPCO, 2013, which covers 680 formulations, with effect from May 15, 2014, replacing the 1995 order that regulated prices of only 74 bulk drugs.

Set up in 1997, NPPA has been entrusted with the task of fixation/revision of prices of pharma products, enforcement of provisions of the Drugs (Prices Control) Order and monitoring of prices of controlled and decontrolled drugs.