Prices of coronary stents reduced, government informs HC
New Delhi, March 2 (IANS) The government on Thursday informed the Delhi High Court that the prices of coronary stents, used to treat narrowed or weakened arteries in patients, have been reduced by 85 per cent.
A division bench of Chief Justice G. Rohini and Justice Sangita Dhingra Sehgal, taking into record a notification issued by the National Pharmaceutical Pricing Authority (NPPA), disposed of a public interest petition filed by Advocate Birender Sangwan, who sought price control on stents.
Earlier, the bench had directed the central government to fix the maximum retail price (MRP) and a ceiling price by March 1, 2017, for coronary stents.
Responding to the court’s direction, the Ministry of Chemicals and Fertilisers said that on February 13, an order of capping the price of stents was issued. All manufacturers and importers were also directed not to price their products above the notified ceiling price, the court was told.
The price of drug eluting stents and bio-resorbable scaffold or biodegradable stents, which used to range between Rs 40,000 and Rs 1.98 lakh, was now capped at Rs 29,600 and the bare metal stents, earlier priced between Rs 30,000 and Rs 75,000, would now cost just Rs 7,260, said the government.
On December 21 last year, coronary stent was notified by the Department of Pharmaceuticals (DoP) as a Schedule-I drug under the Drug Price Control Order (DPCO) 2013, making it eligible for price control.
The petitioner had alleged that the government and the NPPA were being “insensitive and irresponsible” towards the people by not taking any steps to fix the price of the medical device, which was reportedly being sold very costly in the country.
It had also claimed that people in all age groups in the country suffer from heart ailments, requiring use of stents, and not all of them can afford this treatment.