Palace Fixes Drugs Retail Prices

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President Arroyo Tuesday signed Executive Order No. 821 mandating the Maximum Drug Retail Price over the remaining five essential drugs that failed to satisfy the recommended price slash by the government.The five drugs that were placed under the MDRP scheme that represents a 50 percent price decrease include the Anti-hypertensive drug Amlodipine 2.5 mg, 5 mg, and 10 mg (including its S-isomer and all salt form) which are now priced at P9.60, P22.85 and P38.50 respectively; the Anti-cholesterol drug Atorvastatin 10 mg (P34.45), 20 mg (P39.13), 40mg (P50.50), 80 mg (P50.63), Amlodipine besilate 5mg+ Atorvastatin calcium 10 mg tablet P45.75, and Amlodipine Amlodipine besilate 5mg+ Atorvastatin calcium 20mg (P66.25) among others.Also included in the list is the Antibiotic Azithromycin (and all its salt form) 250 mg (P108.50), 200 mg/5 ml powder for suspension (15 ml); 200mg/5ml powder for suspension (22.50 per mL), 500 mg tablet P151.43, 500 mg vial for injection (992.50) and 2g granules (P468).Anti-neoplastics or anti-Cancer Drug Cytarabine 100 mg/ml ampul/vial (IV/SC) (P240), 100 mg/mL ampul/vial (IV/SC) (5mL) or 500 mg vial (R900), 100 mg/mL ampul/vial (IV/SC) (10mL) 5mL or 1g vial (P1800), 20 mg/mL (5mL) ampul/vial for injection (P1980). Doxorubicin and all its salt form 10mg powder vial for injection 1465.75 and 50mg powder vial for injection (P2265.74).Department of Health (DoH) National Drug Program manager Dr. Robert So said they based the ceiling price of these drugs on the base price in the first quarter of this year.Earlier, drug companies volunteered 16 drugs under the voluntary price reduction that include medicines for hypertension, diabetes, common bacterial infections, amoebiasis (a leading cause of diarrhea), cancers (like leukemia, the number one killer among pediatric cancer patients) among others. The DoH originally prepared a list of 21 drugs recommended for the voluntary price slash scheme."In addition, these pharmaceutical companies also undertook to reduce by about ten to fifty percent the prices of 22 other drugs and medicines not included in the initial list recommended by the DoH and DTI. The reduction of the prices of these drugs and medicines shall commence on Aug. …