Roxas exposes conspiracy between GMA and multinational pharma

Liberal President Senator Mar Roxas today exposed a devious conspiracy between President Arroyo and multinational drug firms to circumvent the cheaper medicines law, in effect keeping critical drugs out of reach of the poor.
"I am informed by very reliable sources that recently, President Arroyo held a closed door meeting with representatives of multinational drug firms," he said.

"Sa meeting nila, napagkasunduan na ipagpaliban muna ang EO na magpapataw ng Maximum Retail Price (MRP) sa mga gamot. Ang kapalit, gagawa ng paraan ang big pharma companies na ibaba ang presyo ng gamot bago sumapit ang SONA ni GMA sa July 28," Roxas revealed.
The Executive Order setting the MRP for 22 essential medicines has been submitted by the Department of Health (DOH) to Mrs. Arroyo as early as June 16. The MRP list seeks to slash by half the prices of these drugs within reach of poor patients who are in need of life maintenance or at the brink of dying.

These drugs include the anti-hypertensive drug Norvasc (to P22.50 from P44.50); anti-diabetic Diamicron (to P7.35 from P14.75); antibiotic Zithromax (to P149.37 from P298.75); and antibiotic Augmentin suspension 60 ml (to P179.50 from P359).
"Sa meeting na iyon, nandoon daw ang Secretary of Health. Tinatanong kita, Secretary Duque, bakit hindi ka umalma sa kuntsabahang nasaksihan mo sa pagpupulong na iyon?" he said.

"I believe that this conspiracy was engineered with the facilitation of an influential Presidential Adviser who is also connected with one of the multinational pharmaceutical giants," he added.

"It is the poor patients that the President should call to Malacañang for a meeting so she can see for herself how hard it is to cling to dear life without affordable quality medication," he said.
Roxas demanded "for the nth time" that the President sign the EO on the MRP "and stop consultations with the pharmaceutical firms as if they were the victims in this issue."

He also demanded that Tamiflu—now priced as high as P150 per tablet—should also be included in the MRP.
"Stop playing with the lives of the people and just implement the law, Mrs. President," he said.

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on July 15, 2009 at 10:20 PM  

"and stop consultations with the pharmaceutical firms as if they were the victims in this issue."

maybe not the drug companies, but the small time pharmacies get affected with this.

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