Reported by Shih Xiao-Guang from Taipei
The Control Yuan passed a correction proposed by four members on the so-called “NHI drug price black-hole”. The correction is issued to the MOHW and the NHIA. The Control Yuan requests the MOHW to ensure improvements to be done by the NHIA and the TFDA.
The correction points out that the NHIA not only deems the drug price gap normal and appropriate, but also considers it beneficial. This attitude has impaired the mechanism of PV survey. The NHIA fails to have a full understanding of the actual transactional prices. As a result, the gap between reimbursement prices and actual transaction prices continues widening. The NHIA has not done its jobs right.
The Control Yuan members reckon that the NHIA fails to establish a reasonable range of price gap and allows hospitals to make obscene profits from drug procurement. This practice has distorted the healthcare environment as hospitals become dependent on profits from drugs and use it to compensate their losses from the provision of medical services.
The Control Yuan members stress that when hospitals largely depend on drug price gap to survive, it creates a black-hole for health professionals’ judgement and patients’ health. Hospital management are meddling with physicians’ prescription rights and forcing patients to accept cheap generics.
The Control Yuan’s investigation report points out that the TFDA should perform their duties to clear the public’s concern about the effectiveness of generic drugs and restore the public’s confidence in the authority. The MOHW should refer to the suggestions issued by the WHO on the promotion of generic drugs and formulate policies to encourage the development and the use of generic drugs. Also, the MOHW should strengthen the communication between the NHIA and the TFDA so as to ensure that drugs are priced according to their effectiveness.
【2016-07-07/ Liberty Times】