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Business News/ News / World/  Pakistan: Karachi witnessed severe shortage of life-saving drugs like insulin, says report

Pakistan: Karachi witnessed severe shortage of life-saving drugs like insulin, says report

Pakistan Health Minister Nadeem Jan expressed his commitment to taking action against those involved, citing the DRAP (Drug Regulatory Authority Pakistan) Act

A severe shortage of life-saving drugs in Karachi worries patients and citizens. Premium
A severe shortage of life-saving drugs in Karachi worries patients and citizens.

In Pakistan, Karachi is currently facing a severe shortage of essential medicines including life-saving drugs, vaccines, insulting for diabetes management, epilepsy drugs, and others, according to a report published by ARY News. 

The shortage has caused serious concern among patients and citizens as the life-saving drugs are now being at higher prices in the black market. 

Last month, the Drug Regulatory Authority also launched a crackdown against an artificial shortage of essential medicines. However, despite their action, the illegal sale of essential medicines continued. 

The health authorities also initiated the registration process for new life-saving drugs and fastened the efforts to implement the plan for bringing other medicines back to the pharmacies. 

Meanwhile, an alternative drug of some other medicine containing a rare formula has also been registered. Under the guidance of interim Health Minister Nadeem Jan, authorities have launched a crackdown on medicine profiteering across Pakistan.

During the operation in Lahore, significant measures were taken against those selling medicines above the approved prices. The crackdown revealed that Heparin injections, medications for tuberculosis, epilepsy, cancer, and life-saving drugs were being illicitly sold at prices exceeding the officially sanctioned rates, ARY News reported. 

In addition, the spokesperson also stated that Tegeral, an epilepsy medicine, was being sold for Pakistani Rupee (PKR) 1300 to 1400 instead of the approved PKR 260 per box.

Heparin injection, originally priced at PKR 975, was being sold at PKR 1500 to 3000, and Rivotril was being retailed at PKR 700 to PKR 800, surpassing the authorized PKR 267 per box. Furthermore, Rivotril 2mg was being sold for PKR 800 to PKR 1000 instead of the mandated PKR 400, ANI reported. 

Similarly, Zenax 0.5mg was being sold at PKR 1400 rather than the approved PKR 278, and Zenax 1mg was priced at PKR 4000, significantly higher than the sanctioned PKR 502. The Ultrawest box, which should have been priced at PKR 3418, was being sold at PKR 6,500.

The health minister further asserted that the DRAP task force would take decisive action against individuals engaged in profiteering. "The task force of DRAP will take full action against the profiteers," he added. 


(With ANI inputs)

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Published: 10 Dec 2023, 11:17 AM IST
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