Drug regulator NPPA approves price rise of 50% for carbamazepine, ranitidine, ibuprofen
Drug regulator NPPA approves price rise of 50% for carbamazepine, ranitidine, ibuprofen

The national drug pricing regulator (NPPA) on Friday said it has allowed a one-time increase of 50 per cent in the ceiling prices of nine scheduled formulations of three drugs - carbamazepine, ranitidine and ibuprofen - to ensure their availability.

These drugs are used as the first line of treatment and are important to the public health programme of the country, the National Pharmaceutical Pricing Authority (NPPA) said in its order.

NPPA, in its meeting on June 28, deliberated upon the case of upward price revision of the formulations of these drugs under Para 19 of DPCO 2013 and noted that the scheduled formulations being considered for upward price revision are low-priced drugs and have been under repeated price controls, it added.

DPCO 2013 is the Drugs (Prices Control) Order, 2013.

While carbamazepine is a anti-epileptic drug, ranitidine is used for the treatment of ulcers of the stomach and intestines and to prevent intestinal ulcers from coming back after they have healed. Ibuprofen is used to relieve pain from various conditions such as headache, dental pain, menstrual cramps, muscle aches, or arthritis.

The National Pharmaceutical Pricing Authority (NPPA) said it is of the considered view that unviability of these formulations should not lead to a situation, where these drugs become unavailable in the market and the public is forced to switch to costly alternatives.

To address the situation arising due to repeated price control, a one-time price increase of 50 per cent from the current ceiling price is being considered in public interest as an exceptional measure as advised by the Standing Committee on Affordable Medicines and Health Products (SCAMHP), NPPA said.

Accordingly, "NPPA invokes extraordinary powers in public interest under Para 19 of DPCO 2013 for upward revision of the ceiling prices of the nine scheduled formulations of 3 drugs by giving one time increase of 50 percent from the present ceiling price," it added.

The regulator was constituted as an independent regulator for pricing of drugs and to ensure availability and accessibility of medicines at affordable prices.

NPPA provides ceiling price to all drugs notified under Schedule-1 of the DPCO 2013, and monitors annual price increase for these and the non-scheduled drugs.

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