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Insurance authorities seek deal on 128 drugs

Published on 08/21 2019  Source: China Daily
 

A total of 128 drugs treating cancers, rare diseases and some chronic diseases are currently listed in the upcoming medical insurance access negotiations, authorities announced on Tuesday.

About 60 to 70 percent of those drugs are imported, said Xiong Xianjun, director of the Medical Service Department at the National Healthcare Security Administration. The administration is negotiating with drug companies to get a better bargain to include the drugs in the medical insurance system.

He also revealed that the negotiations will conclude in early November.

Those 128 drugs are all patented drugs that are used to treat cancer, hepatitis B, diabetes, high blood pressure and some rare diseases, according to Xiong.

"Most of those drugs under negotiation are innovative medicines," Xiong said. "Once agreements are reached between the government and drugmakers, those drugs could be included in this year's national drug list."

Xiong also released this year's list of drugs covered by national medical insurance. A total of 148 new drugs have been added, growing the list to 2,643.

China has a national medical insurance program in which the list of drugs eligible for insurance reimbursement names all the drugs covered by the insurance program, some in full (type A drugs) and others partially (type B).

Patients must pay full price for those drugs outside the list, which can be a huge financial burden, especially when new and more effective drugs are not covered.

According to Xiong, 150 drugs have been banned from this year's list, including those containing endangered wild animals and plants, contraceptives, and pharmaceuticals for slimming, cosmetology and smoking cessation.

"The adjustments in the list are made in accordance with the needs of the public. The new list aims to further ease the financial burden for patients and encourage the production of more innovative drugs," said Yan Qinghui, spokesman of the administration.(Source: China Daily)