NPPA Current Affairs

NPPA caps prices of orthopaedic knee implants

The drug price regulator National Pharmaceuticals Pricing Authority (NPPA) has capped the prices of orthopaedic knee implants upto 70% lower than current market rates.

It will be valid for all orthopaedic knee implants sold within India – whether domestic or imported. Earlier in February 2017, the NPPA had capped the prices of stents used in cardiac surgery.

Background

According to World Health Organization (WHO) estimation, osteoarthritis is going to be the fourth largest cause of immobility in globally by 2020. NPPA in its preliminary analysis had found that importers, distributors and hospitals are earning hefty trade margins ranging from 67% to as high as 449% orthopaedic knee implants.

Capped Prices

Now, the most widely used Cobalt chromium knee implant will cost around Rs. 55000 instead of current average price of over Rs. 1.58 lakh. Titanium Oxidized Zirconium surgery implant has been capped at Rs.76,600 against the current average prices of Rs.2.5 to 4.50 lakh. The High flexibility implant costing from Rs. 1.80 to 4.5 lakh has been capped at Rs. 56,490. The revision implants for second surgery has been capped at over Rs. 1.13 lakh. Besides, the Specialized implants for cancer and tumor will be charged at over Rs. 1.13 lakh.

Comment

This decision has been taken keeping people’s interest and health security of the nation into consideration. It is considered as a major relief to patients suffering from knee problems. It will help check unethical profiteering in the implant surgery. It will benefit around 1.5 to 2 crore knee patients and result in savings of Rs 1,500 crore annually to patients requiring surgery.

National Pharmaceutical Pricing Authority (NPPA)

NPPA is an independent body under Department of Pharmaceuticals under the Union Ministry of Chemicals and Fertilizers. Its functions are to fix/revise the controlled bulk drugs prices and formulations, enforce prices and availability of the medicines under the Drugs (Prices Control) Order, 1995/2013, recover amounts overcharged by manufacturers for the controlled drugs from the consumers and monitor the prices of decontrolled drugs in order to keep them at reasonable levels.

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NPPA increases stent prices by around 2%

Drug price regulator National Pharmaceutical Pricing Authority (NPPA) has increased price of stents by around 2% after taking into account wholesale price index.

It will increase price of bare metal stents to Rs. 7,400 rupees from Rs. 7,260 and of drug-eluting stent to Rs. 30,180 rupees from Rs. 29,600.

What is coronary stent?
  • A coronary stent is a tube-shaped mediacal device placed in the arteries that supply blood to the heart.
  • It keeps the arteries open in the treatment of coronary heart diseases.
  • Bare-metal stent: It is a mesh-like tube of thin wire used in cardiac arteries was bare metal often made of 316L stainless steel. More recent stents (‘2nd generation’) use cobalt chromium alloy.
  • Drug-eluting stents: It is a peripheral or coronary stent placed into narrowed, diseased peripheral or coronary arteries that slowly releases a drug to block cell proliferation.
  • It is often preferred over bare-metal stents because the latter carry a higher risk of restenosis, the growth of tissue into the stent resulting in vessel narrowing.

coronary sten

Background

In July 2016, stents were included in the National List of Essential Medicines (NLEM) and were added to the Schedule I of the Drug Prices Control Order, 2013, in December 2016, bringing the devices under price control. In February 2017, the NPPA had brought stents under price control and capped ceiling price of coronary stents. It was the first medical device to be brought under price control.

About National Pharmaceutical Pricing Authority (NPPA)

  • NPPA is nodal government regulatory agency that controls the prices of pharmaceutical drugs in India. It functions under the aegis of Union Ministry of Chemical and Fertiliser.
  • It advices Union Government in matters relate to drug policies and pricing and revisions/changes in the drug policy. It also monitors availability of drugs, identify shortages, if any, and to take remedial steps.
  • NPPA decides the ceiling prices of essential medicines under The Drug (Prices Control) Order 2013.

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