By Mohamed El-Atroush
Deputy Minister of Health and Population (MOHP), Dr Abdel Hamid Abaza, revealed that his department is reconsidering the minister’s resolution regarding the pricing of pharmaceuticals. The announcement came as key figures in the pharmaceutical industry voiced their objections to some of the articles in the resolution that set prices. Dr Abaza stressed that the resolution is, so far, enforced by law.
He added that the Ministry notified pharmaceutical companies, syndicates of both physicists and pharmacists, and Egyptian Initiative for Health Rights coordinators, to arrange for an immediate meeting to discuss a resolution to the pricing dispute.
Dr Abaza noted that the Central Administration of Pharmaceutical Affairs concurred with the drug industry’s leaders to amend several articles of the resolution, but that the Chamber of Pharmaceutical Industries (CPI) changed its intention to file charges and block the resolution.
The latest meeting of the CPI board of directors was reported to have come to a decision to file charges against the Minister of Health to block the resolution number 499, year 2012, which is related to pricing pharmaceuticals.
Dr Makram Mehana, Director of the Chamber of the Pharmaceutical Industry, said that the latest resolution of the Ministry of Health meant that pharmaceutical companies would stop manufacturing approximately 22% of the drugs available in the market since the cost of production was higher than selling prices.
Dr Mohamed Elghoneimy, Director of the General Syndicate for Drug Manufacturers, noted that the current conflict between the Ministry of Health and the pharmaceutical industry is due to an increase of pharmacies’ profits to 25% from of 20% on the drugs priced before this resolution. However, these drugs were priced while accounting for the pharmacists’ profit to 20% only.