First Day Of Fiscal Year Sees Nearly 800 Medicines Price Hike! Which Medicines Are Affected?

Today marks the beginning of the fiscal year 2024–'25. On Monday, April 1st, the prices of essential medicines for livelihood increased. It's been reported that along with the rise in the Wholesale Price Index of the Central Chemical and Fertilizer Ministry, the prices of medicines have been raised to a new threshold. As a result, experts suggest that the prices of nearly 800 types of medicines, essential for the daily needs of individuals, have escalated.

According to the notification issued by the National Pharmaceuticals Pricing Authority (NPPA) under the Drug Price Control Order of 2013, prices of steroids, antibiotics, painkillers, vitamins, blood pressure-sugar-cholesterol, and fever-cold-cough medicines are being increased. However, experts note that, compared to previous years, the increase in medicine prices this time is relatively low. The NPPA has stated that based on the recommendations of the Ministry of Industry and Commerce, the prices of 726 medicines have been stabilized according to the Wholesale Price Index, resulting in an increase of 0.0051% over the previous prices. During the fiscal year 2022–'23, a 10% increase was implemented, and during 2023–'24, a 12% increase in prices was implemented.

Health authorities argue that despite the assurance that the increase in prices won’t burden the public, ordinary middle-class families and daily medicine users are concerned. For them, even a slight price hike matters significantly. This sentiment is echoed by many healthcare professionals.

On the other hand, the authorities claim that they have set new upper limits to control the prices of 69 medicines for high blood pressure and diabetes. The NPPA has stated that the upper limit of the prices of all these medicines has been set between 8.92 rupees and 13.25 rupees.

As the new fiscal year commences, the increase in medicine prices poses challenges for many individuals, especially those reliant on daily medication for chronic conditions. Despite the assurances from authorities, the impact of these price hikes on the general public remains a point of concern.

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