In wake of hit movie depicting plight of cancer patient, Chine moves to slash prices.

In the wake of hit movie, the world's second largest pharmaceutical market has slashed the prices of cancer drugs.

China has struggled with the plight of those unable to afford prohibitively expensive drugs since establishing public insurance in 2011. The movie “Dying to Survive”, depicting the story of a man jailed for smuggling generic drugs from India for leukaemia, struck a cord with many.

Echoing popular sentiment, China will add 17 new cancer drugs for national reimbursement upon drastic price cuts. The prices have been reduced by 56.7% on average, imported drugs being 36% lower than neighbouring countries. China’s State Council is demanding new drugs be approved only on conditions that the price is not higher than the country-of-origin or comparable prices in countries near to China. For example, the price of Erbitux (manufactured by @Merck) is now the lowest globally.

Beijing began price negotiations in 2016 with only three drugs successfully included in the first round. Last year 36 more cancer drugs were covered in under it's national health insurance scheme.

Ten of the 17 drugs under this current round of negotiations are new drugs that were launched after 2017 | @heatinformatics (chart via @Nomura)