China vows to maintain stable drug prices
BEIJING, Aug. 22 (Xinhua) -- China's National Healthcare Security Administration said Thursday it will establish and improve a long-term mechanism for drug prices to ensure the supply of clinical medicines at reasonable prices.
The administration's deputy head Chen Jinfu said at a press conference that measures including price monitoring, credit rating and legal punishment will be taken to make sure the drug prices are set reasonably by the pharmaceutical firms.
Unreasonable price hikes will be punished in accordance with relevant regulations and laws, Chen said.
Chen added that the drug procurement mechanism will be further reformed to maintain a fair and healthy market order.
The current drug prices are stable as a whole, Chen said, noting that the prices for some drugs with great clinical value have dropped significantly.
A total of 70 percent of commonly used medicines saw lower or unchanged prices compared with that in 2015, according to official data. The prices of cancer drugs or those with high prices dropped by an average of 18 percent.
The data also showed that about 30 percent of commonly used medicines saw price rises due to lack of market adjustments and prices hikes of raw materials.