The Delhi High Court Thursday asked the Centre to fix by March 1 next year the maximum retail price (MRP) of coronary stents, which are used to treat narrowed or weakened arteries in the heart.
The court was informed that the maximum price for coronary stents — both metal and drug stents — will soon be fixed by the central government as the notification to classify the stents as a Schedule 1 drug under the Drug Price Control Order (DPCO) 2013 has been issued.
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But the bench of Chief Justice G Rohini and Justice Sangita Dhingra Sehgal asked why the MRP had not been fixed even though the notification had originally been issued in July.
The move has come several months after the July 2016 order that had included coronary stents as an “essential drug” for which prices can be controlled by the National Pharmaceutical Pricing Authority (NPPA), said the bench.
The bench’s observation came after the central government said that the Department of Pharmaceuticals had on Wednesday issued a notification putting bare metal stents, drug-eluting stents and bio-resorbable scaffold or biodegradable stents in Schedule-I of
On July 19 this year, the Health Ministry included stents in the National List of Essential Medicines (NLEM) after the court demanded action on a public interest petition filed by advocate Birender Sangwan, who sought price control on stents.
The petitioner alleged that the government and the NPPA are being “insensitive and irresponsible” towards the people by not taking any steps to fix the price of the medical device which is allegedly being sold at a high price 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.