To prevent hoarding during the Covid Pandemic, the government has set a price cap on oxygen concentrators
Given the price volatility of oxygen concentrators, particularly in the last month when the second wave of the Coronavirus pandemic was at its peak and demand was at an all-time high, the government has set a trade margin of up to 70%.
According to statistics from the Ministry of Chemicals and Fertilizers, the margin at the distributor level presently runs from 198 percent to 198 percent, a measure aimed at avoiding black marketing.
The National Pharmaceutical Pricing Authority (NPPA) made the decision, and it has given all makers and importers three days to report the amended maximum retail price. The cap was established on June 4, and NPPA will publish the updated pricing in the public domain within a week.
Every retailer, dealer, hospital, and institution is required by the ministry to post the new price list, as provided by the manufacturer, in a prominent location on their business premises, where it is easily accessible to anybody desiring to check the price.
Furthermore, under the provisions of the Drugs (Prices Control) Order, 2013 and the Essential Commodities Act, 1955, manufacturers and importers who fail to comply with the revised MRP after trade margin capping will be required to deposit the overcharged amount, plus interest of 15% and a penalty of up to 100%.
To prevent cases of black-marketing, state drug controllers have been requested to monitor compliance with the order to guarantee that no producer, distributor, or retailer sells oxygen concentrators to any consumer at a price higher than the updated MRP.
The order will be in effect until November 30, 2021, after which it will be reviewed.