The government is planning to take tough measures in an effort to make essential medical instruments such as pacemakers, catheters affordable to patients.
According to a TOI report, a list of “essential medical devices” is being prepared by the government to implement anti-profit policies such as limiting trade margins.
According to the report, the trade margin could be 30-50 percent, which will function as a deterrent to distributors, wholesalers, retailers and even hospitals from drawing broad margins on essential tools.
The trade margin is the difference between the price at which manufacturers sell drugs to stockists (and distributors) and maximum retail price (MRP) to patients.
The government can currently regulate only those products that fall into the National List of Essential Devices category. These are drug eluting stents, cardiac stents, condoms and intra uterine instruments.
According to the study, the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR), a research and evaluation arm of the Ministry of Health, called for a conference on July 26 to address numerous problems related to the cost of medical tools.
Consultation rounds have already been held in this respect between the National Pharmaceutical Pricing Authority (NPPA), the Pharmaceutical Department (DoP), and the NITI Aayog, the think tank of the government