The drug price regulator National Pharmaceutical Pricing Authority (NPPA) has refused to allow multinational pharmaceutical companies to hike prices of imported insulins sold in the country.
In a recent authority meeting, NPPA rejected all applications from companies requesting increase in prices.
“Some companies had approached us for price increase, mainly in insulins. But we have rejected those applications as they do not have a case,” an NPPA official said.
Multinational companies like Novo Nordisk, Sanofi Aventis and Eli Lilly are the major players in the imported insulin segment in India.
The regulator has also refused to allow a price hike to Novartis for its Vitalux Plus, a specially-tailored combination of vitamins and minerals to maintain healthy eyes.
Instead, in one of the cases, the price regulator has marginally reduced price of Sanofi’s Apidra U100 Solostar to Rs 528.44 for a 3 ml cartridge with pen and needles from Rs 529.14.
In total, NPPA has considered a total of 33 cases for price revision in its meeting last week including monocomponent insulins, multi-vitamins and eye drops. In some of the cases, the regulator has fixed the price for the first time.
Currently, NPPA directly regulates prices of 74 bulk drugs and formulations containing one or more of these bulk drugs. Any pharmaceutical company manufacturing or selling these medicines have to approach the regulator for any price revision. For all other medicines, firms are allowed to increase prices by up to 10 per cent annually but for any hike beyond that companies are required to seek permission from the regulator.