Health Minister to discuss drug price controls with industry

By Dilanthi Jayamanne

Health Minister Maithripala Sirisena said he would be meeting drug importers, local producers and agents this week to discuss the proposed drug price control.

Addressing the opening of the ‘Hemal’s Thallessemic Care Unit North Colombo Teaching Hospital (Professorial Unit) Kiribathgoda on Friday (11) he said there were a large number of drugs available under different brand names at varying prices in the market.

Drugs should be retailed at a reasonable price and not sold like building materials. If a patient visited ten pharmacies to buy one drug, the particular drug will be available in all of them under different brand names at different prices, he said adding that the government intended to control the prices of drugs from next year with a gazette notification.

Minister Sirisena stressed on the need to maintain good management in the health sector. Every institution presents a demand for the development of resources. The resources could be developed with good administration. Good health services could be provided through good administration. Serving in the health sector could decide if one was to achieve nirvana or hell. Sirisena, added.

There are over three hundred Thalessemic patients receiving treatment from the Unit at the Colombo North (Ragama) Teaching Hospital.

The house and property was donated to the Health Ministry by Mrs. Ariyarathne last year. It was revealed during the opening ceremony that Mrs. Ariyarathne had first mentioned the idea of donating her house and property to the Ministry when she had gone for treatment to the Welisara Chest Hospital.

The new Unit provides young and adult patients the facilities to receive treatment from its OPD or as indoor patients.

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