Caretakers’ parting gift: prices of 146 life-saving drugs jacked up

Pharmaceutical companies given free hand to enhance 116 other drugs on their own.

ISLAMABAD: The caretaker government has increased the prices of 146 life-saving medicines before a new elected government takes in over within a few weeks. 

According to a notification issued by the Ministry of National Health Services, the prices of drugs fir cancer, antibiotics and vaccines have been increased manifold with immediate effect.

Officials said that the National Drug Regulatory Authority (DRAP) had sent a summary of 262 drugs seeking an increase in their prices. However, the government approved price increase for 146 medicines.

It has been learnt that the pharmaceutical companies have been given a free hand to increase the prices of 116 other drugs that were included in the list sent by DRAP.

Earlier, the caretaker government had deregulated the fixing of the prices of some medicines allowing the firms to enhance their prices without taking permission from the government.

Under the constitution, the caretaker government is mandated to run day to day affairs during the interim period from the expiry of an elected government till the taking over of a new elected government. It has no mandate or power to take policy decisions.

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