ISLAMABAD, (Pakistan Point News - APP - 10th Augst,2016) : Drug Regulatory Authority of Pakistan (DRAP) has decided to introduce 'bar coding system' first time in the country to curb the menace of spurious drugs. This was informed to the meeting of National Assembly Standing Committee on National Health Services, Regulations and Coordination, chaired by Khalid Hussain Magsi here on Wednesday. The body was informed that the bar coding system was being used in developed world and legislation for this purpose will be finalized soon.
Chief Executive Officer (CEO), DRAP, Dr. Muhammad Aslam informed the body that the government has drafted a legislation for imposing punishment and fine for unauthorized increase in prices of drugs by pharmaceutical companies. He said that to further strengthen inspection system of pharmaceutical manufacturing units, DRAP has started working with Pharmaceutical Inspection Co-Operation Scheme (PIC/S), Australia and planning for further training of DRAP's officials for effective implementation of good manufacturing practices in pharmaceutical manufacturing units.
He said that in order to further strengthen pharmaceutical registration system, DRAP will start receiving registration applications on Common Technical Document format in early 2017. It will further help in increasing national pharmaceutical exports, which are otherwise decreasing. CEO, DRAP said that a comprehensive Drug Pricing Policy has been approved in 2015 by the government, which was declared by independent analysts as fair, transparent and balanced policy with least discretionary powers.
In this policy, annual price increase is linked with Consumer Price Index. Moreover, hardship category and orphan drug policy was introduced to provide solution for unfeasible and critically needed drugs. This policy is not only about price increase but for first time price reduction mechanism is also introduced. Some pharmaceutical companies have increased the prices of their drugs at their own and then got stay orders.
He said that the DRAP is vigorously following these cases in higher courts and has requested the courts for early fixation of dates for disposal of the cases. The CEO briefed that recruitment process in various cadres of DRAP has been finalized and soon the authority will have new human resource in the organization for more speedy work. The committee also discussed Regulatory Authority of Pakistan (Amendment) Act, 2016, moved by Dr. Fouzia Hameed, MNA and after deliberation, the committee members rejected the bill.