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11 January, 2019

Kazakhstanis can check compliance of drug prices with established limits in new mobile application

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Chairperson of the Pharmacy Committee of the Ministry of Healthcare Lyudmila Byurabekova told about this during the online conference on the PrimeMinister.kz official site.

As Byurabekova noted, the National Center for the Expertise of Medicinal Products within the framework of the Law “On Amendments and Additions to Certain Legislative Acts of the Republic of Kazakhstan on the Circulation of Medicinal Products and Medical Products” developed a mobile application, which is currently in test mode for approbation.

In this mobile application, citizens will be able to see the registered layout of the package, the price of the drug, as well as whether the drug has passed a safety and quality assessment. In addition, users of the application will have the opportunity to leave feedback on the fact of price rises for certain medicines.

“If suddenly a person sees that the price is higher than the one indicated in the mobile application, he will be able to take a picture and immediately send an appeal that the price is too high in the pharmacy. In addition, all prices will be posted on the Internet resources of the Ministry of Healthcare, the Pharmacy Committee, in the Center for Drug Evaluation. In the event of overpricing, citizens will be able to apply to our regional departments. Administrative responsibility is provided for this excess,” Byurabekova said.

Byurabekova also spoke about the current situation on the drug market, taking into account the rapidly emerging digitalization. The new law provides for a full switch to e-procurement through a single distributor SK-Pharmacy LLP and other medical organizations.

“To date, we have launched a procurem    of huge paper bags. Previously, it was several volumes, but now it is all tracked in electronic format,” said Byurabekova.

In addition, the auction itself previously held in person with all participants. It took 3 to 5 days. The presence of all members of the tender commission and procurement participants was required. Now it all takes place online.

The chairperson of the committee also said that new prescription rules are being developed in the implementation of this law, where doctors will only indicate the international non-proprietary name (each drug that has a trade name has an active substance, the so-called international non-proprietary name – INN). According to the new rules, the doctor will prescribe drugs in electronic format in the Unified system of drug supply. Then the patient goes to the pharmacy, where the pharmacist will offer him all products that they have in stock. The patient will be able to choose the best option she can afford.

This law will also regulate seasonal price fluctuations.

“We will set prices twice a year — in July and January. Prices will be valid throughout this period throughout the territory without hesitation. That is, below the marginal price that will be set, it will be possible to sell, above — administrative responsibility will already be provided for,” the chairperson of the Pharmacy Committee noted.

In conclusion, Byurabekova gave the Kazakhstanis recommendations on the choice of drugs.

“With regard to prescription drugs, I would like to address citizens, patients, if suddenly a situation arises that medication is necessary, this should be done only by a doctor’s prescription, with a prescription and only after receiving the drug in a pharmacy. If, however, the situation is such that just a cold virus infection, then you need to come to the pharmacy, consult a pharmacist who also has the appropriate education, and will help you find the right antipyretic drugs or symptomatic drugs. In general, I want to wish everyone to be healthy and not get sick!” Byurabekova summed up.

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