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Centre calls media reports on hike in medicine prices ‘false & misleading’

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New Delhi, April 3:  The Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare on Wednesday said that media reports claiming a significant hike in medicine prices are “false, misleading and malicious”.

Some media reports have claimed that medicine prices will spike by 12 per cent from April, which will affect more than 500 medicines.

However, the ministry said that ceiling prices of scheduled medicines are annually revised by the National Pharmaceutical Pricing Authority (NPPA) based on the Wholesale Price Index (WPI).

“Based on WPI increase of 0.00551 per cent, there will be no change in prevailing ceiling prices for 782 medicines while 54 medicines will have a minuscule increase of Rs 0.01 (one paisa),” the ministry said.

The ceiling price of these 54 medicines ranges from Rs 90 to Rs 261.

The WPI increase is the maximum increase permissible as per provisions of Drug Price Control Orders (DPCO) 2013, and “manufacturers may or may not avail this minuscule increase in their medicines,” the ministry said.

“Thus, in the year FY 2024-25, there will be almost no change in the ceiling price of medicines based on WPI.”

The Ministry noted that depending upon the ceiling price of their medicines, the companies adjust their Maximum Retail Price (MRP) as MRP (excluding GST) can be any price that is less than the ceiling price.

It added that the revised prices “will be applicable from April 1”, and the details of revised prices are available on NPPA’s website.

IANS

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