On November 24, the Chamber of Deputies approved the changes proposed by the Senate in relation to the bill that modifies article 38 of Law 1119/1997 on health products and others, with the intention of introducing more delegates from State institutions in this area, which is in charge of establishing parameters for setting drug prices in Paraguay. Now the text has been approved and will be sent to the Executive Branch for its enactment.
Among other points, this will allow the National Directorate of Health Surveillance (DINAVISA in Spanish) to regulate the price of medicines marketed in the national territory. According to the deputy Tadeo Rojas (Partido Colorado – ruling party), president of the Budget Committee, “the proposed modifications reduce the bureaucracy of the original bill and help the applicability of the text which, in principle, intended to establish prices by means of an inter-institutional committee”.
The approved text empowers DINAVISA to set the prices of drugs marketed in the country, which must be updated periodically, both for the increase of maximum prices and for their reduction, through the creation of an inter-institutional consultative committee. On the other hand, and with a view to facilitating the population’s access to medicines, the agency must set prices through differentiated coefficients, depending on whether they correspond to products manufactured locally, imported in bulk or finished products.