• News
  • Columns
  • Interviews
  • BW Communities
  • Events
  • BW TV
  • Subscribe to Print
BW Businessworld

Drugs For Cancer, Autism See Up To 86% Price Cut In A Year

Drug pricing regulator NPPA has slashed price of cancer drugs by up to 86 per cent since March last year providing relief to lakhs of patients

Photo Credit :


Drug pricing regulator National Pharmaceutical Pricing Authority (NPPA) has slashed prices of drugs for the treatment of variety of cancers, autism, depression and hormonal disorder along with antibiotics by up to 86 per cent since the introduction of national list of essential medicines (NLEM) 2015.

According to NPPA, the top 10 medicines where ceiling prices have seen substantial reduction, mostly in year 2016, include lung cancer drug gefitinib, anti-autism drug risperidone, prostrate cancer drug bicalutamide and chemotherapy drug, Temozolomide.

Prices of lung cancer drugs have fallen by up to 86 per cent whereas prices of drugs to treat autism have plunged by up to 83 per cent, with maximum price of Rs 397 for each packet.

Similarly, prices of letrozole, an oral non-steroidal inhibitor for the treatment of breast cancer after surgery, have been slashed by 80 per cent. Letrozole tablets cannot be sold beyond Rs 36.38 per tablet.

NPPA has capped prices of 716 drugs in last one year while it took three years in capping prices of 530 drugs under NLEM 2011, mentioned Bhupendra Singh, chairman of NPPA, in a tweet while appreciating the effort of his team.

Last month also, NPPA announced in a tweet, that there has been "a significant price reduction in cancer drug prices since March 2016 which included drugs such as Iressa of AstraZeneca Pharma India, whose price has been brought down from Rs 29,259 to Rs 3,977, fall of 86 per cent and Dr Reddy's laboratories' Grafeel - the price of which has been pruned by 41 per cent.

Union Minister for Chemicals and Fertilisers Ananth Kumar applauded Prime Minister Narendra Modi in a tweet saying “Upto a whopping 86% price reduction in cancer drugs. Affordable healthcare for all is a reality under Prime Minister Narendra Modi government.” Kumar had retweeted NPPA’s tweet showcasing the list of cancer drugs undergone major price reduction.

Moreover, significant price reduction has also been seen in anti-diabetic drugs. For instance: Prices of Sun Pharma’s Glypride has been squeezed from Rs 91 to Rs 53, a drop of 42 per cent.