COL. The list of price-controlled medications is updated
4 enero 2018

Colombia’s National Commission of Prices on Medicines and Medical Devices (Comisión Nacional de Precios de Medicamentos y Dispositivos Médicos) presented the list of the 236 new medications that will have a maximum sales price. The notice, which also updates the maximum sales price of 558 products, brings the total number of price-controlled medications to 1,042. The measure does not impact patients, given that all the medications were already covered in the benefits plan, but rather benefits the health care system. The average price reduction is around 32% and will generate annual savings of more than US$ 17 million.

Among the new regulated drugs are cancer treatments, antibiotics, and contraconceptives. The medications added to the list include Roche’s Zeliboraf and Mircera. Other oncology medications with maximum prices are Firmagon (Degarelix, for prostate cancer), Inlyta (Axitinib, for kidney cancer), and Kaxel (active ingredient Capecitabine, for breast cancer and other tumors). Prices for oncology medications (such as Xeloda and Herceptin), for arthritis medications (Actemra), and for medications for the treatment of conditions affecting eyesight (Avastin, Valixa), among others, were also updated.

The decision by the agency under the Ministry of Health and Social Protection considered various criteria, including the epidemiological importance and the high price of medications in comparison to the 17 countries that Colombia uses as a benchmark. With regard to the latter point, the agency pointed to “the dispersal of the prices of these medications in markets that are not yet regulated.”

The regulation of medication prices is one of the pillars of the pharmaceutical policy implemented by the Colombian government. Other measures that have been adopted include the centralized procurement of medications, the promotion of competition among biotechnology products, and the fostering of transparency between the industry and the various actors within the sector.

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