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Sudanese medics condemn soaring medicine prices

May 1 - 2020 KHARTOUM
A pharmacy in one of the suburbs in Khartoum (File photo)
A pharmacy in one of the suburbs in Khartoum (File photo)

Doctors and pharmacists in Sudan have denounced the recent increase in the prices of medicines.

According to pharmacists, the prices of locally made medicines increased by 70 to 120 per cent, while the prices of imported medicines have risen by 16 percent.

The price of locally produced antibiotics has risen from SDG 100 to SDG 200. A strip of aspirin tablets now costs SDG 20 instead of SDG 10.

In a press statement yesterday, the pharmacists described the increases in the prices of locally manufactured medicines, including medications for people suffering from chronic diseases, as “unprecedented”. The soaring medicine prices “narrow the opportunity for most Sudanese to buy their much-needed medication”.

The Socialist Doctors Association called in a statement on the Sudanese medics “and all living revolutionary forces” to resist “this increase in the price of medicines and the government’s economic policies, until policies that reflect the December Uprising and the efforts of the Sudanese to live decent life have been adopted”.

On Wednesday, the Central Pharmacists Committee described the new pricing of locally produced medicines by the National Council for Medicines and Toxins as “sudden and illogical.

Minister of Health Akram El Tom called the price increases of local medicines “unjustified”, and directed the Sudanese Pharmacists Association to urgently discuss the matter in a meeting with all their partners.

Before the price increases, most Sudanese were already having difficulties to cover their medical expenses.

A housewife told Radio Dabanga from Omdurman in mid-February that she was stricken with malaria earlier that month. Her husband, an electrician with an average monthly income of SDG 4,000, paid more than SDG 1,000 for a visit to a doctor, laboratory tests, and the medicines and vitamins prescribed.

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