Some problems seen in medical market due to increase in the price of raw material
Pranab Jung Pandey : After covid-19, India which is the global supplier of generic drugs increased the price of raw materials. It even restricted the supply of 26 pharmaceuticals ingredients including finished products. Association of pharmaceuticals producer Nepal had press released one year ago informing that, the Nepalese company won’t be able to supply some essential medicine at their current price as the price of raw material has increased. So The association notified Department of Drugs Administration (DDA) about the problems of manufacturing industry and their need for price increase. The drug manufacturing company cannot increase the price on their own, they have to notify the administration.
When The price of us dollar was RS. 62 and the prices of the raw materials ranged between $2 to $3 and at that time that time MRP was fixed. But now the dollar price has risen to Rs.17 and the price of raw material rises up to $9. so the association proposed an increase of around 50 percent in the prices of essential medicine. According to department and drug administration medicine is an essential commodity and there is price celling on it, but that doesn’t mean the price of medicines will not increase. So The current situation was considered by DDA to increase the price as the manufacturing companies were operating in loss. Though the situation was considered, there were lots of procedure to increase the price, increase in the time could probably bring shortage of medicine in Nepal.
What is generic medicine and how can it solve the problem of by reducing the cost with same quality:
Generic medicine is similar in composition or quality to those medicine with its brand name. Difference between generic medicine and brand medicine resembles the coco cola that we have in a five-star hotel and the coco cola that we drink at a local restaurant. so simply when we ponder the reason for difference in the cost of coke at five star and local restaurant then we will find that good brand name, good ambiance and pleasant environment at five star makes the price difference. Similarly, brand medicine features its brand name by attractive packaging, edible colors and magnificent taste.
Significant points to get ponder is generic medicine given don’t have their brand name. So there is no point for extra production cost on attractive packaging, edible colors magnificent taste for generic medicine. Examples of generic medicines are paracetamol, ascorbic acid, dapagliflozin plus metformin, rosuvastatin plus ezetimibe, formoterol, and hydroxychloroquine and brand medicine of paracetamol is cetophen and cetamol.
so generic medicine can only be the medium to adjust the price which will be suitable for both producer and consumer, as Nepal is a biggest importer of raw materials and increase in its price can easily bring inflation on various firms and their product.
Due to price ceiling on medicine the price even cannot be shared between producer and consumer like other commodities. So best way is to reduce unnecessary raw materials for making eye catching brand and replace brand medicine with generic. If such environment is created, then instead of increment in there will reduction in price of medicine.
We can simply learn from our neighboring country India’s sun pharmeicituls which is a billion-dollar company selling cheapest generic medicine around the globe.