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Q. Revamp excessive drug price control: Discuss the need to revamp excessive drug price control mechanism and also provide some suggestions.
Nov 08, 2016 Related to : GS Paper-3

Ans :

Introduction-

Currently more than 450 types of essential drugs are kept under rigorous price control, which according to many will discourage production and supply, and can often defeat the very purpose of easier access. Recently it has been reported that central government is planning to revamp drug price control and shore up the ease of doing business in the high-potential pharmaceuticals sector, which has been lauded by many. 

Reasons to revamp excessive price control-

  • When medicines are included in the essential list, they come under stringent price control mechanisms, it lacks the sense and demotivates the manufacture.
  • Such measure contains the growth of high potential pharma sector industry in India. India needs to avoid rigorous price controls that often lead to producers stopping production.

Suggestions-

  • Instead of stringent control, government should regulate prices with rational mechanism when required. 
  • Similarly instead of controlling, it should promote competition among various players, often competitive pressures and sound oversight can bring down prices.
  • Similarly India needs to encourage generic medicines in case of essential drugs. 
  • Lastly inclusion and deletion under the list of essential medicines would need to be decided as per public health requirements from time to time, with expert opinion.

Conclusion-

Currently pharmaceuticals sector in India has potential grow further and development of pharmaceuticals sector will makes access to drugs much easier. But various restrictions and price control mechanisms have potential to contain this growth, hence there is urgent requirement to revamp the excessive price control mechanisms. 


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