Union Agriculture Minister Sharad Pawar, who heads the group of ministers (GoM) on Pharmaceutical pricing policy, stated that all issues related to the proposed pharmaceutical pricing policy have been resolved. He chaired a meeting of the GoM on pharmaceutical pricing on Wednesday.
It may be recalled that the National Pharmaceuticals pricing policy (NPP) 2011,which aims to bring 348 essential drugs under price control, was passed by the Sharad Pawar-headed GoM in September. But this could not be tabled in the Cabinet, as the finance ministry had raised some issues. The GoM had decided to discuss the issue again on Wednesday.
Speaking to the media after the meeting, Pawar said: “My colleagues had raised some issues, which have been resolved”. The GoM’s recommendations would be sent to the Cabinet for approval. The Cabinet meeting will be held before November 27, which is also the deadline set by the Supreme Court for deciding on the policy. Currently, only about 74 drugs are under price control.
If the NPP 2011 comes into force, 348 drugs would be included in the national list of essential medicines (NELM). The move is significant, as the drugs constitute about `29,000 crore of the total drug market.