U.S. to India: Revise Stance on Capping Med Device Prices

The Government of India has limited retail prices of medical devices such as knee implants and heart stents by up to 75 percent to make them more affordable, but the $5 billion Indian medical-technology industry that includes Abbott Laboratories, Boston Scientific Corp, and Johnson & Johnson, among others, has protested these moves, saying they hurt innovation, and future investment.

SYNERGY StentReuters reports that a senior United States Trade Representative official said they were pressing India to not extend price caps to other devices, allow for higher pricing for technologically advanced equipment, and let companies withdraw their products if they wish to.

With margins of profit exceeding 400 percent for some devices, the government has equated such high margins to ‘illegal profiteering’, and Prime Minister Modi says that providing affordable healthcare to patients takes precedence over the interests of companies.

Tanoubi Ngangom, an associate fellow for healthcare at the Observer Research Foundation based in New Delhi, says India should develop policies based on its requirements and not succumb to diplomatic pressure.

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Posted on by Gunjan Bagla
Gunjan Bagla
California-based management consultant Gunjan Bagla runs Amritt, a consulting firm helping American companies to succeed in India. Amritt is the trusted advisor for India market research, India business development, India market entry, Global Engineering, Global Technology Scouting, India R&D and Open Innovation. Gunjan is author of "Business in 21st Century India: How to Profit Today from Tomorrow’s Most Exciting Market" (Hachette Book Group, 2008), Amazon's top rated title on the subject. He has appeared as the India Expert on BBC Television, Bloomberg TV, Fox Cable Business and has been quoted in the New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, the Hollywood Reporter and Business Week for his expertise on India.


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