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Medicine prices mark sharp rise in Sylhet

26Prices of some medicines have registered a sharp rise in the Sylhet city as elsewhere in the last couple of months as drugstores are allegedly charging higher prices for medicines than the maximum retail price (MRP).
Some patients and regular users of common medicines complained that many drugstores are selling medicines at higher prices than the MRP in the Sylhet .
They also alleged that the medicines are being sold at higher prices under the nose of the officials of Drug Administration, a government body to control anomalies regarding drugs.
A recent investigation has found that prices of medicines for common use and cardiovascular, diabetes, asthma and other complicated diseases, including some antibiotics, have risen sharply.
Jasocaine 2%, a commonly used injection for secondary and tertiary operation, is being sold at Tk 325 instead of its MRP Tk 44. The drug is selling at about 600 percent higher than MRP.
Povicep, a liquid solution, is being sold between Tk 145 and Tk 160 instead of its MPR Tk 100 and Povicep cream is being sold at Tk 135-155 instead of its MRP Tk 80.
Tablet- Folison, a medicine for multiple usages, is being sold at Tk 35 instead of its MRP Tk 5 per strip (10 tablets).
A nasal decongestant medicine is being sold at Tk 40 instead of its maximum retail price Tk 10.
Prices of all medicines of heart diseases have risen by 10-25 percent in the city market, according to some shop owners at Chouhatta, Zinda Bazar and Famaus medicine markets. Nitromint-2.8 milligram, an anti hypertensive drug, is being sold at Tk 75 from its earlier price of Tk 50 within a week.
Azitrowmycine syrup, a very commonly used essential antibiotic, is being sold at Tk 140 from its earlier price of Tk 125.
Prices of Pantonix-20 and 40 milligram per ten tablets have increased by Tk 30 to Tk 50 and Tk 40 to Tk 60 respectively within few weeks.
Price of EC plus, a combined vitamin, has increased to Tk 200 from Tk 150 perphial within a month. Avolac, a laxative drug, is being sold at Tk 140 from its earlier price of Tk 120.
Lasix, a lifesaving drug, is now being sold at Tk 100-110 whereas its price was Tk 64 only per hundred tablets.
About the price hike of medicines, noted pharmacologist said after witnessing the price hike of medicines, it seems that there is no price control authority in the country now although Drug Administration has been set up by the government to remove all anomalies regarding drugs.
He said the Drug Administration is not functioning properly in accordance with the Drug Control Act.
He also stressed the need for strengthening the monitoring system in the medicine shops and penalising the medicine shops if any anomaly is found.
“But, the Drug Administration is not doing it,” he said, adding that a rational pricing policy can be framed to control price hike of medicines and it will ultimately serve the interests of both the consumers and owners of the pharmaceutical companies.
Drug Super in Sylhet said some drugstores are charging higher prices for medicines on the plea of supply shortage.
Inspection teams are being sent regularly to monitor the anomalies in drug market across the country. “But, the expected results from monitoring cannot be achieved if the people, who are being sent to inspect the drug market, are dishonest,” He said.
He also said the Drug Administration will take action against any such medicine shop and can shut it down if anybody comes to the office of the authorities with proper evidence.