Members of the Pharmaceutical Healthcare Association of the Philippines are willing to provide price reductions to the public if the Department of Health (DOH) will agree, according to PHAP executive director Teodoro Padilla.
AFP
Pharmaceutical firms offer to cut drug prices by 75%
Sheila Crisostomo (The Philippine Star) - December 19, 2019 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — In an attempt to block the mandated price ceilings on medicines, pharmaceutical companies have offered to reduce prices by up to 75 percent for at least 150 medicines for 36 diseases.

Members of the Pharmaceutical Healthcare Association of the Philippines are willing to provide price reductions to the public if the Department of Health (DOH) will agree, according to PHAP executive director Teodoro Padilla.

Among the drugs covered by the proposed price cuts are those for heart diseases, diabetes, kidney ailment, asthma, psoriasis, neurologic disorders, HIV and infectious diseases.

Padilla said medicines for various types of cancer such as breast, colorectal, lung, cervical, kidney, ovarian, lymphomas and prostate are also covered by the price reduction.

“The price reductions are expected to be felt throughout the supply chain from manufacturers down to the government and private retail drug stores dispensing medicines directly to the public,” he said.

Government hospitals have been the source of the cheapest medicines because they purchase in bulk from pharmaceutical companies, Padilla said.

“For instance, an anti-cholesterol tablet costs only P0.35 in a government hospital while a medicine for hypertension can be sold for as low as P0.19,” he said.

The DOH has proposed the inclusion of 122 “most expensive but commonly needed medicines” in the second phase of the Maximum Drug Retail Price (MDRP) to reduce prices by as much as 50 percent.

The first MDRP was implemented in 2009 covering only five medicines.

Health Secretary Francisco Duque III has assured the public that through the MDRP, the mandated price cuts would be implemented throughout the entire supply chain – from the manufacturers and distributors to retailers and sellers.

Padilla said the government has been acquiring medicines at lower prices through bulk procurement. He cited a medicine for cancer, which was procured at a discounted price of 74 percent.

With a partnership between the government and PHAP, Padilla said there is no need to impose price controls on medicines.

He believes that prices of medicines in the Philippines are now comparable with other countries in Southeast Asia.

MEDICINES
Philstar
  • Latest
  • Trending
Latest
Are you sure you want to log out?
X
Login

Philstar.com is one of the most vibrant, opinionated, discerning communities of readers on cyberspace. With your meaningful insights, help shape the stories that can shape the country. Sign up now!

FORGOT PASSWORD?
SIGN IN
or sign in with