The Centre on Thursday informed Delhi high court that the prices of life-saving coronary stents, used in angioplasty to ensure blood supply to and from the heart, have been slashed by 85 per cent from their existing prices and capped.
The price of drug-eluting stents and bioresorbable scaffold or biodegradable stents, which used to range between Rs 40,000 and Rs 1.98 lakh, is now capped at Rs 29,600 and the bare metal stents, earlier priced between Rs 30,000 to Rs 75,000, would now cost just Rs 7,260, the government told a Delhi High Court bench headed by Chief Justice G Rohini.
The court took on record a notification issued by the National Pharmaceutical Pricing Authority (NPPA) and disposed of the plea seeking a direction to the government to regulate the prices of life-saving stents.
The high court had asked the government to fix the maximum retail price and a ceiling price of coronary stents.
In pursuance to the high court's direction, the Ministry of Chemicals and Fertilisers, today said that on February 13, they had issued an order capping the price of stents and also directed all manufacturers and importers not to price their products below the notified ceiling price.
Central government standing counsel Amit Mahajan handed over the copy of the notification and said "the ceiling prices shall be applicable from the date of publication of this notification in the Gazette of India Extraordinary and shall also be applicable to all the stocks of coronary stents available for sale in the trade channel."
The court was hearing a PIL filed by Birender Sangwan, who had questioned why the manufacturers and hospitals did not display the MRP of stents, along with the ceiling price. Following this, the high court on December 22 last year had directed the Centre to fix a ceiling price and the maximum retail price of cardiac stents by March 1.