NEW DELHI: The government' decision to revise ceiling prices of bare metal stents and drug-eluting ones has evoked mixed reactions from the medical devices makers representative bodies.
While Advanced Medical Technology Association (AdvaMed) said they were disappointed with the government's decision, the Indian Manufacturers of Medical Devices (AiMeD) and Indian Stent Manufacturers Association (ISMA) welcomed the move.
Almost a year after it slashed rates of coronary stents by up to 85 per cent, the government yesterday revised the ceiling prices of bare metal stents and drug eluting ones.
In the case of bare metal stents (BMS), the government has increased the prices from current Rs 7,400 to Rs 7,660. On the other hand, price of drug eluting stents (DES) has come down to Rs 27,890 from Rs 30,180.
"AdvaMed and its members are deeply disappointed with the National Pharmaceutical Pricing Authority's (NPPA) notification on the ceiling price for coronary stents,"
AdvaMed said in a statement.
This notification disregards stakeholder representations and goes against patient interest by failing to reward innovative technologies thereby limiting patient choice for current and future medical device innovations, it added.
"To achieve real on-the-ground impact, we hoped that the government would consider alternate approaches such as Trade Margin Rationalisation and differential pricing that have the dual effect of benefiting patients while preserving the environment for innovation and investment in India," the statement said.
A recent study by IQVIA, commissioned by AdvaMed, clearly shows that price controls have not led to lower procedure costs – where patients need relief the most, it added.
AiMeD Forum Coordinator Rajiv Nath, however, said: "We are happy with NPPA's new decision to continue with their directive on price cap by not falling to the lobby of multinational manufacturers."
Single category on DES is scientific and continuation of the above stand gives confidence to the manufacturers. The manufacturers could have welcomed higher pricing to accommodate inflation. But the government can be assured of support from manufacturers, he added.
In similar vein, ISMA Convenor Ganesh Sabat said: "We welcome the NPPA's new decision, but we would have been very happy if the price would have been kept constant or NPPA would have increased it by the inflation rate."
Nonetheless, ISMA will continue to support the NPPA by ensuring ample supply of products across India thereby focusing on high level efficiency in product supply, he added.
Translumina Therapeutics LLP MD Gurmit Singh Chugh said: "NPPA's decision shall pinch domestic companies for their R&D efforts to create global technologies. Nonetheless, we will continue to support hospitals by ensuring ample supply of high quality products across India."