Prices of few cancer drugs slashed; second consecutive cut this year

The Maximum Retail Price (MRP) of some cancer drugs has been slashed by the National Pharmaceutical Pricing Authority (NPPA) by up to 60 per cent. This is the second time since March that prices of some cancer drugs has been cut. In March, the rates were brought down for around 380 drugs, with some cuts going to as much as 80-90 per cent under trade margin rationalisation.

According to NPPA, the prices of nine non-scheduled anti-cancer medicines were reduced by 30 to 60 per cent. Some of the drugs whose prices have been slashed are Erlotinab, Pemetrexed, Epirubician, Leuprolide acetat and Everolimus. These medicines treated different type of cancers including prostate and breast.

This reduction in price comes as part of NPPA's focus on slashing of anti-cancer drugs prices. The VP of a cancer drug firm, however, told Hindu Business Line that that reduction announced by NPPA only sees marginal rationalisation at individual drug level.

The reduction in price will cap the trade margin of these drugs at 30 per cent. The NPPA has approved a formula that restricts the trade margin of the selling price by up to 30 per cent. So far, price-cap has been put on around 1,000 drugs with this formula. According to data from India Against Cancer, each year, more than 11.50 lakh new cancer patients are registered.


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