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Gov’t may Impose Price Ceiling for Pharmaceutical Companies

The government will possibly intervene in pricing in a case of catastrophic price hikes for  drugs.

According to  Deputy Minister of Health Valery Kvaratskhelia, medications from the dollar zone as well as from Russia and Belarus have risen  in price. And if the price of medicines increases dramatically and the availability reduces, the government will be able to intervene.

“If prices continue to increase, we’ll take  certain measures to stop growth, but a lot depends on the dollar rate. Maybe subsidies will be carried out or an upper limit on important medicines will be imposed. If the dollar drops, the prices will be regulated. 10% of  drugs  have become expensive at this stage”, – says Kvaratskhelia.

Is it acceptable to interfere in the process of establishing prices of medicines under market economy conditions?

Tina Turdziladze, Chairwoman  of the Healthcare Experts’ Club , believes that drugs subsidizing is  the only way to ensure affordability for medicines, but at the same time it contains  a lot of critical risks and, in her opinion, mistakes  and omissions in this way will further aggravate the problems.
As for the price ceiling, she thinks  this is  one of the types of  price regulation which is irrelevant to our system, and vice versa  will create  a problem of physical access to the drugs.

An expert Levan Kalandadze expresses  a sharper position stating that  the establishment of a ceiling is not justified in any circumstances, because the government will clearly show that  private companies should work at a loss.
As for the issue of subsidies, the expert opposes this approach, but notes that if we are talking about the government’s short-term social action for certain social groups, it has some justification.