PPMA urges PM to sign Drug Prices Summary sent by DRAP

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 PPMA urges PM to sign Drug 
Prices Summary sent by DRAP

KARACHI: Pakistan Pharmaceutical Manufacturers’ Association (PPMA) has urged the prime minister to sign summaries sent by the Drug Pricing Committee last year to ensure availability of drugs and medicine. The demand was made by Chairman PPMA Dr. Kaiser Waheed while addressing a press conference along with some other members. Failure to do so, will make the life of patients suffering from Hepatitis-C and renal failure difficult due to their short supply.

The PPMA chairman was of the view that ideally such matters should have been dealt at the level of the Drug Regulatory Authority of Pakistan (DTAP) without sending them at the ministerial level and later on to the PM House. It has been the consistent demand of the PPMA and of the entire Pharmaceutical industry to grant complete autonomy to the DRAP to regulate entire affairs of the Pharma sector.

Dr. Kaiser Waheed further stated that production and availability of a number of essential medicines, life-saving drugs, new and orphan molecules in Pakistani market had been severely affected due to indecision of the Government .For instance Hepatitis C patients in Pakistan have yet to get access to Declatasvir a tablet, which contains miraculous-like cure for people suffering from this fatal disease that was earlier considered incurable. Then patients of renal failure on dialysis could not get tablets to maintain desired level of vital Amino acids in their body as these are medicines whose unavailability in the local market simply means that fundamental rights of large number of patients in the country are not being fulfilled by the State, he said.

He said that a few months back a delegation of the PPMA had met President Mamnoon Hussain and urged him to play his role in this regard but he too expressed his helplessness by responding that the Pharma industry should start manufacturing these essential medicines locally. However, no drug can be manufactured locally unless it is commercially feasible, PPMA chairman added.

Dr. Waheed also raised the issue of an illegal system of Panel inspection which had been imposed on the Pharma industry, which used to apply to the Registration Board of the DRAP for introduction of any new medicines in Pakistani market. This would only delay manufacturing and introduction of new medicines in the Pakistani market since people were made part of the so-called panel inspection teams who had no idea at all about good manufacturing practices of the Pharma industry.

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