The Pharmaceutical Society of Nigeria (PSN), Plateau chapter, has attributed the soaring cost of drugs to high tariff placed on pharmaceuticals.
“Prices of drugs have gone up by 300 per cent and this is due to the high tariff on pharmaceuticals; there is an urgent need for a downward review in the interest of the poor masses,” its Chairman, Shehu Sheni, said on Monday.
He told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Jos that drugs, which initially attracted zero per cent tariff on imported medicals, had gone beyond the reach of average Nigerians following the introduction of a high tariff on them.
“A drug previously sold for N300, now costs N1000; the situation will get worse if nothing is done about it,” he said.
He noted that 70 per cent of drugs consumed in the country were imported, with only 30 produced locally.
“For those imported, the increase in tariff and the high cost of foreign exchange have affected their prices in the market.
“We have written to the government on the need to reduce the tariff on imported drugs to make them affordable.
“In the letter, we drew government’s attention to the fact that fake and adulterated drugs had flooded the markets as dealers cut corners to break even and stay afloat.
“We also told government that such substandard drugs were very dangerous and certainly inimical to health,” he said. (NAN)