New Delhi: This is one of the best news that one has heard in 2017. In a major relief to lakhs of heart patients the National Pharmaceutical Pricing Authority (NPPA) reduced prices of stents by about 85%. The price of high grade drug eluting stents (DES) and bioresorbable stents has been capped at Rs 30,000, while that of bare metal stents has been fixed at Rs 7,500.
The prices are effectiveFebruary 14.
At present, the cost of a drug eluting stent varies between Rs 24,000 to Rs 1.5 lakh and that of a bioresorbable stent between Rs 1.7 lakh to Rs 2 lakh. In India, over 95% of stents used are drug eluting.
This step is a boon for persons with clogged arteries. An estimated 6 lakh stents were used in 2016.
The cost of manufacturing a DES stent is about Rs 8000 to a domestic firm, while the imported ones start from Rs 5,000. NPPA has said that a stent could cost the patient over ten times by the time it reaches the patient from the manufacturer.
NPPA data shows that the hospitals make upto 65% profit on stents. It is because of this many hospitals were opposing price control on stents.
Now, the hospitals will have to bill stents separately. The new rule says, "Every retailer and dealer shall display the price list and the supplementary price list, if any, as furnished by the manufacturer, on a conspicuous part of the premises where he carries on business in a manner so as to be easily accessible to any person wishing to consult the same."