Medicine Pricing Policies Readjusted

The State Development Planning Commission (SDPC) Thursday made public five regulations to improve drugs pricing policies.

The measures mainly involve government pricing scope, approach, approval procedures, and market price supervision.

Government-set prices will be allocated to patent medicines, new medicines that belong to the first and second categories, narcotics, psychosis medicines that also belong to the first category, immunity medicines, and contraceptives.

Prices for medicines that are not listed in the state medicine directory for medical insurance will become market-oriented and will be decided by producers and retailers, an SDPC official said.

Government pricing departments will only offer the ceiling prices, enabling retailers to lower their selling prices according to market changes.

Medicine producers can apply for independent prices for products that are proven to be more effective, safer, less expensive or requiring a shorter time to cure.

The central government will adopt a medicine price monitoring system in a bid to closely follow market price changes. In addition, the government pricing departments will organize experts to discuss the prices before they are put into effect.

The official warned that any price violations will be harshly dealt with.

(Xinhua 12/22/2000)

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