Roxas to GMA: Grab the credit as long as you sign EO on MRP

Wednesday, July 15, 2009 | posted in , , , , | 0 comments

Liberal President Senator Mar Roxas today said President Arroyo can grab all the credit for the Cheaper Medicines Law as long as she signs the executive order imposing the maximum retail price on the 22 most essential medicines for Filipinos.
"Gawin na lang nating GMA (Gamot na Mura’t Abot-kaya) ang acronym nitong MRP (Maximum Retail Price) na ito para pirmahan na siya ni Pangulong Arroyo (Let’s just change the MRP to GMA to facilitate its immediate signing by President Arroyo)," said Roxas, who is primary author of the Universally Accessible, Cheaper and Quality Medicines Law.
He said getting the price of the 22 most essential medicines cut down by 50 percent once they are included in the MRP list is more important than who gets the credit for putting the program into law.
"Malaking isyu ito para kay GMA at sa kanyang mga alipores kaya ayan, gawin na lang nating G.M.A. para bumaba na ang presyo ng mga gamot (GMA and her men are making an issue out of this acronym so let us give what they want so prices of medicines would now go down)," he added.

"Madam President, huwag ka ng magselos sa akin dito sa Cheaper Medicines na ito, masyado ka namang insecure. Ayan at sa iyo na ang credit. Pirmahan mo na ang executive order (Mrs. President, stop being jealous of me because of this Cheaper Medicines law, you are too insecured. The credit is now yours. Sign the EO)," he also said.
The DOH has transmitted the draft EO on the MRP to the Office of the President as early as June 16. Almost a month today, the EO has yet to be signed by Mrs. Arroyo.
"Isang bolpen lang naman ang katapat niyan. Kung may oras kang makipag-miting sa mga pharmaceutical companies at bumiyahe sa ibang bansa, magbigay ka naman ng kahit isang minuto lang pirmahan itong EO na ito (You only need one ballpen to do this. If you have the time to meet with pharmaceutical companies and travel abroad, then spend even one minute to sign the EO)," he said.

"Matagal na itong hinihintay ng ating mga kababayan. Unahin mo naman ang kanilang kapakanan (Our countrymen have long been waiting for this. Prioritize their needs, please)," he added.
The proposed EO would allow the halving of the prices of essential medicines, like 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).



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Kevin Ray N. Chua

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