Islamabad, AUG 25 /DNA/ – PPP Parliamentary Leader in the Senate, Senator Sherry Rehman has grilled the PTI government for once again increasing the price of life-saving medicines. “Instead of providing relief in times of extreme inflation and high unemployment, the PTI government has hiked the prices of essential medicine by a whopping 150%. This is the 10th increase in medicine prices since 2018.”

“While other countries are making lifesaving drugs for free, the PTI government is busy playing politics during a national health crisis. Let’s not forget, last year the Drug Regulatory Authority of Pakistan (DRAP) hiked the prices of 253 life-saving drugs by a massive 25%-35%,” the Senator added.

“It is DRAP’s job to make sure that pharmaceutical companies do not hike medicine prices without any scrutiny. It is alarming that there is no price regulating mechanism for medicines under this PTI government. If this is not incompetence, then what is?”, added the Senator.

Commenting on the back-to-back hike in medicine prices under the PTI government, the Senator added, “in June – 2020, the federal government had amended the Drug Pricing Policy 2018, allowing pharmaceutical companies to increase prices of medicines up to 10% without any scrutiny. Similarly, the PTI government allowed the pharmaceutical companies to increase the prices of 45,000 medicines by up to 15% in 2019. Overall, the prices of at least 463 hardship medicines were increased by a whopping 200% – the highest increase in the last 40 years.”

Vice President PPPP, Senator Sherry Rehman concluded by saying, “globally, governments are focused on improving healthcare systems, but the PTI government has clearly bowed down to pharmaceutical companies while the poor and vulnerable suffer. Record breaking inflation, hikes in electricity/gas tariffs, and now another hike in medicine prices. The PPP rejects this move.” DNA