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Stent makers withdraw devices for ‘re-labelling’

Most hospitals in cities like Mumbai are running out of the latest generation of cardiac stents, as their makers and distributors have withdrawn them for re-labelling, a media report said.

“The companies have taken it away for pasting the new rates, but our fear is they will not return to hospitals any time soon,” the Economic Times quoted a senior cardiologist from Bombay Hospital at Marine Lines as saying.

According to the report the latest version of the drug eluting stents (DES) too has been whisked away from most of the hospitals.

As per the National Pharmaceutical Pricing Authority’s (NPPA) orders, manufacturers, importers and retailers are to implement the price cap without trying to create any artificial shortage.

The regulatory authority had capped prices of bare metal stents to Rs 7,260 and that of drug-eluting and bioresorbable stents to Rs 29,600 recently. All state chief secretaries have been directed to ensure compliance of price capping and availability of stents in hospitals.

Both these categories of stents were available at hospitals for the price between Rs 1.5 lakh and Rs 2 lakh before their price was fixed.

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