ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Pricing of Cardiac Stents

The pricing of cardiac stents in India has been mired in controversy and allegations of profiteering at the cost of vulnerable patients. This article looks at the stances of various stakeholders around the issue leading up to the government slashing the prices of stents by a huge percentage.

The author wishes to thank the many cardiologists and persons from within the stent trade with a conscience who could not accept the looting of patients through stent pricing for sharing their views and crucial inside information. She also wants to thank Malini Aisola and K M Gopakumar of the All India Drug Action Network.

On 13 February, the National Pharmaceutical Pricing Authority (NPPA) effectively slashed the price of cardiac stents by 85% (NPPA 2017c). Though the stent manufacturing industry had been bracing itself, the extent of these cuts came as a shock. No one in the trade had expected that the government would follow through on its promise to bring down the price of cardiac stents, certainly not by such a huge percentage.

Many, especially cardiologists, have questioned why, out of the hundreds of medical devices used in healthcare, the cardiac stent was chosen for price control. It is one among the 22 medical devices notified as drugs under the Drugs and Cosmetics Act, 1940. Since India has no separate regulatory body for medical devices and since these devices were notified as drugs, they are regulated by the Central Drugs Standard Control Organization (CDSCO).

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Updated On : 20th Jun, 2017
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