Friday January 19, 2018

Essential medicines to cost less as govt caps prices of new drugs

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New Delhi: Come Diwali, the treatment of diabetes, hypertension and pneumonia will cost less in the country with the Drug price regulator National Pharmaceutical Pricing Authority (NPPA) capping the prices of as many as 18 new brands of essential medicines.

According to reports, most of these new brands of medicines are expected to be launched in the market within a fortnight.

Fixing the maximum retail price of these medicines at the average of MRP of all medicines available in that particular therapeutic segment with at least 1% market share, the regulator has brought these medicines under price regulation using paragraph 5 of the Drugs Price Control Order (DPCO), 2013.

Leading pharmaceutical companies like Cipla, Merck, Franco Indian, Alembic Pharma and Unichem etc. will be affected due to the price fixation by the NPPA.

Failing to comply with the prescribed retail price will have consequences for the erring firms.

“The concerned manufacturer/ marketing company shall be liable to deposit the overcharged amount along with the interest thereon under the provisions of the DPCO, 2013”, the NPPA said, adding that “if a company was planning to discontinue manufacture or sale of any of these medicines, then it would have to seek permission from the regulator six months in advance.”

The NPPA further said, “If any medicine was priced lower than the ceiling fixed by the regulator, then companies selling such drugs should maintain the existing or lower retail price.”

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How social isolation causes diabetes

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A new research found that social isolation could lead to diabetes. Pixabay
A new research found that social isolation could lead to diabetes. Pixabay

This study on diabetes was published in the journal BMC Public Health, the team involved 2,861 men and women aged 40 to 75 years.

Findings

  • Men and women who are not active socially and remain isolated may be at an increased risk than individuals with larger social networks.
  • A lack of social participation was associated with 60 per cent higher odds of pre-diabetes and 112 per cent higher odds of Type 2 diabetes in women compared to those with normal glucose metabolism.
  • Men who lack social participation in clubs and groups had a 42 per cent higher risk of Type 2 diabetes, while those living alone had 94 per cent higher risk.
  • The study is the first to determine the association of a broad range of social network characteristics — such as social support, network size or type of relationships — with different stages of Type 2 diabetes.
1.7 million people aged 20 years or older were newly diagnosed with diabetes. Pixabay
1.7 million people aged 20 years or older were newly diagnosed with diabetes. Pixabay

“As men living alone seem to be at a higher risk for the development of type 2, they should become recognised as a high risk group in health care. Social network size and participation in social activities may eventually be used as indicators of diabetes risk,” said co-author Miranda Schram, from the varsity.

Early changes in glucose metabolism may cause non-specific complaints such as tiredness and feeling unwell, which may explain why individuals limit their social participation.

Promoting social integration and participation may be a promising target in prevention strategies for type 2, the researchers suggested.

“Our findings support the idea that resolving social isolation may help prevent the development of Type 2,” said lead author Stephanie Brinkhues, from the Maastricht University Medical Centre, in the Netherlands.

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