Drugs Current Affairs - 2019
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Sub-Regional Drug Focal Point Meeting and Colombo Plan Drug Advisory Programme (CPDAP), South Asia under the Drug Demand Reduction (DDR) Expert Group Consultation has begun in New Delhi.
The three-day meeting was inaugurated by Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh which has been organised by Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB).
- Main objective is to review the progress of the Drug Demand and Supply Reduction activities in the South Asia region.
- Facilitate exchange of views between delegates on technical aspects of the drug cooperation programme and it aims at achieving efficiency and effectiveness.
- Address the needs of the member states and help formulate a uniform strategic plan to address drug use and abuse related problems.
- CPDAP will provide a great platform to coordinate among different countries fighting for the cause of drug menace.
- About 40 delegates from various participating countries are participating in this meeting.
Drug Menace in South Asia region
- South Asia region is present on the so called Golden Crescent (overlaps Afghanistan, Iran and Pakistan) and Golden Triangle (overlaps Myanmar, Laos and Thailand) which are two main opium-producing areas in the world.
- Part of South West and South East Asia are more venerable for drug trafficking and its abuse especially among the youth is matter of concern.
- The involvement of various terrorist groups and syndicates in drug trafficking has been seen as grave threat to national security and sovereignty of countries in this region.
- India’s concern: Due to its close proximity with major opium growing areas of the region, India is facing the serious menace of drug trafficking and spillover effect.
Union government has allowed pharmaceutical companies to hike rates of 509 essential medicines by 3.84 per cent. The new prices will be effective from 1 April 2015.
In this regard, National Pharmaceutical Pricing Authority (NPPA) has issued a notification under Drug Price Control Order (DPCO), 2013 in line with the wholesale price index of 2014.
These essential medicines are used for treating various ailments like hepatitis B and C, diabetes, and cancer.
Presently, Union government regulates prices of a total of 348 essential medicines based on the simple average of all medicines in a particular therapeutic segment with sales of more than 1 per cent.
Union government also regulates prices of all other medicines and pharma companies are allowed to hike prices of such drugs by only up to 10 per cent in a year.
DPCO, 2013 was notified by the Union government with an effect from May 2014. It has replaced the 1995 order that regulated prices of only 74 bulk drugs and covers 680 formulations.