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Pharmaceuticals depriving masses of Rs 90 billion annually

Lahore: Health Watch on Sunday said it has calculated impact of unlawful drug price hike on the masses by pharmaceutical companies at Rs 90 billion annually.

It lauded the Supreme Court (SC) for putting pharmaceutical firms on notice for overpricing of drugs on false grounds pushing healthcare out of the reach of millions of the downtrodden.

Many local and multinational companies are exploiting masses with the help of health authorities which should also be taken to the task, said Mian Aftab, President Health Watch.

In a statement issued here, he said that the SC’s move is a turning point in the history of Pakistan which will save the poor from onslaught of greedy pharmaceutical companies.

Mian Aftab said that priing scandal is bigger than the Ephedrine scam but people are not bothered since no big names are involved.

He added that the federal government on July 13, 2012 reduced prices of 92 pharma products but influential companies refused to cut price. Many continued to sell medicine on inflated prices while dozens increased prices as there is no law in the country.

He said that pharma industry is acting like a mafia and the situation speaks of rampant corruption in the ministries while the end-user is the ultimate victim who is made to pay Rs 90 billion additionally per annum.

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