YEARS ago, the government came up with a landmark legislation aimed at bringing down the prices of medicines in the Philippines.
Today, however, prices of many medicines continue to spiral beyond the reach of the people, particularly the poorest of the poor.
Of course, this is lamentable and saddening considering the still increasing number of poverty-stricken people not only in the countryside but elsewhere.
That’s why the incoming administration, which will be elected on May 9, should prioritize the crafting of laws to ensure that the costs of medicines are affordable.
It is public knowledge that sick people still go to quack doctors and faith healers instead of seeking treatment in government and private hospitals.
This is understandable because of grinding poverty. “Hindi natinmasisisi ang mga taong ito kasi talagang hindi nila kayangmagpagamot sa doctor,” a village official said.
In fact, more and more people find it impossible to eat three times a day because they are jobless, with the continued closure of businesses due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Thus, it is also incumbent upon the incoming government, headed by the successor of President Duterte, to go after drug firms that overprice medicines.
We share the view of various quarters that those who overprice drugs should be punished to the fullest extent of our laws.
The government must unburden the people from the problems of high costs of drugs and medical services.