Prices of Ayurvedic drugs in Kerala likely to spiral

Prices of Ayurvedic drugs in Kerala could go up very soon, with the pandemic-hit manufacturers feeling the pinch of high raw material costs and a drastic fall in business.

Indications of this were evident in a recent survey conducted by the Kozhikode and Wayanad district committees of the Ayurvedic Medicine Manufacturers Organisation of India (AMMOI). Around 30 members were included in it.

All respondents have sought an increase in medicine prices. Sixty-one per cent of them said raw materials were not available according to their needs, and 93% said they were buying them at a higher price. The cost of production becomes higher, after adding transportation charges.

“Price rise of Ayurvedic drugs may be inevitable considering these circumstances. It has been two to three years since the prices were revised in the State,” Manoj Kaloor, AMMOI functionary, said.

Dr. Manoj pointed out that over 80% of the 700-odd manufacturers in Kerala operate smaller units. The pandemic, especially the second wave, had a severe impact on them.

The survey said 54% of manufacturers reported a fall in business by 50%, and others reported a loss of above 50% or 25%. None reported normal business. Around 14.3% got help from banks or other financial institutions, and some of them were due to repay the amount. As much as 61% of respondents reduced their staff. Half of the manufacturers had expected a second wave of the pandemic.

Over 60% of respondents said the Drugs Control Department should chip in to help them. Right now, drugs for government Ayurveda hospitals are being purchased from the State-owned Oushadhi. The manufacturers urged the government to buy medicines from other manufacturers as well. The government should also take steps to make available quality raw materials at a low rate.

Dr. Manoj said a detailed survey involving more respondents across the State would be held soon. The manufacturers have also sought the setting up of a commission to study the problems facing the sector.

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Printable version | Jul 31, 2021 4:29:26 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/kozhikode/prices-of-ayurvedic-drugs-in-kerala-likely-to-spiral/article34952918.ece

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