Demands that the NPPA be made into a statutory body to ensure the independence and integrity of the regulator
Pratap Vikram Singh | March 1, 2018 | New Delhi
All India Drug Action Network (AIDAN) has accused US-based multinational firms in healthcare for running a malicious campaign against National Pharmaceutical Pricing Authority (NPPA) and the transfer of its chairman Bhupendra Singh. The government move would adversely impact the NPPA's ongoing work against unethical profiteering by pharmaceutical companies, device makers and corporate hospitals, the AIDAN said in a statement.
According to a government notification issued on Wednesday, the appointments committee of the cabinet has transferred Singh to National Authority for Chemical Weapons Convention in the rank and pay of additional secretary.
"The NPPA under the governance of Injeti Srinivas (former chairman) and Singh showered tremendous leadership. Srinivas was transferred even before the completion of one year following the price regulation of critical cardiac and diabetes medicines through public interest of the DPCO. During his term, Singh has taken many positive steps to ensure affordability of medicines and medical devices that discomforted the industry," the AIDAN, a non-governmental organisation working towards increasing access and rational use of essential medicines, said.
Notably, the NPPA undertook landmark price control of stents and knee implants. There was greater accountability to the public because of increased transparency and responsiveness to grievances of patients and the industry.
The NPPA, the AIDAN said, also saw unprecedented success in the courts with its stands vindicated by favourable judgments passed by the supreme court and high courts in most cases.
Of late, the NPPA took a proactive role in initiating monitoring of high margins charged by private hospitals in an effort to curb unethical profiteering.
"We fear that Singh's transfer in total disregard to the public interest is due to the pressure from the industry and corporate hospital lobby," the AIDAN said.
The pharmaceutical industry has long sought to undermine and weaken the NPPA in order to enable uninhibited profiteering and circumvention of the law. The recent price revise of coronary stents angered the US-based MNCs which ran a malicious campaign against the regulatory authority, the AIDAN said.
"The final precipitating factor, we believe, was the report analysing bills of four patients and which exposed the gross overcharging and misconduct of private hospitals. In this same report, the NPPA appealed for policy intervention to correct the injustice towards patients as it had reached the limits of its mandate," the non-governmental organisation said.
The AIDAN urged the government to reconsider its decision and allow Singh to complete his three year term at the NPPA. It also demanded that the NPPA be made into a statutory body along with fixed term periods for the chairman and leadership to ensure the independence and integrity of the regulator.
The concept of the ‘Rule of Law’ is the basic structure of our constitution. It becomes imperative to observe the rule of law in order to run the country according to the constitutional provisions. However, in reality, often politicians with criminal records get elected and even become part of
The Citymakers: How Women Are Building a Sustainable Future for Urban India, published by Hachette India this month, narrates the genesis and journey of the Mahila Housing SEWA Trust (MHT), set up in 1994 to respond to t
Coming down heavily on the government for economic de-growth and job losses, Congress national spokesperson Supriya Shrinate has said that even before the Covid pandemic struck, the economy had been falling down for eight consecutive quarters. The former journalist said that while the
The ministry of home affairs (MHA) on Wednesday issued an ‘Order with Guidelines for Surveillance, Containment and Caution’, effective for the month of December, noting that “to fully overcome the pandemic, there is need to maintain caution and to strictly follow the prescribed containmen
The scheme of amalgamation of Lakshmi Vilas Bank Limited (LVB) with DBS Bank India Limited (DBIL) has been approved by the union cabinet on Wednesday. On November 17, to protect depositors’ interest and in the interest of financial and banking stability, on RBI’s application und
Education is one of the primary requisites that contribute to the holistic development process of self and society. Article 21A of the Constitution considers “free and compulsory education of all children in the age group of six to fourteen years as a Fundamental Right.” In India, the majority