The Economic Coordination Committee (ECC) of the cabinet has given the green signal for a one-time increase in the prices of medicines by 14 to 20 percent.
The decision was taken during a recent ECC meeting that was presided over by Finance Minister Ishaq Dar and discussed a number of topics, including the acquisition of wheat and the Roosevelt Hotel.
Under the new policy, life-saving drugs will be allowed to increase by up to 70 percent in proportion to their existing inflation. Meaning that the consumer price (retail price) of these drugs can be increased by up to 14 percent.
Meanwhile, up to 70 percent of the inflation rate, can also increase common drugs, but the price hike cannot exceed 20 percent.
The move is likely to impact consumers who will have to pay more for their medication. However, the decision has been taken to help the pharmaceutical industry, which has been struggling with rising production costs and currency devaluation. It remains to be seen how this policy will impact the healthcare sector and the overall economy.