A ban imposed by the Russian government on the imports of medical equipment and medical products for hospitals is a blow on the healthcare in Russia
Statement by YABLOKO Bureau, from March 28, 2014 , 01.04.2014
The Government of the Russian Federation prepared regulation “On establishing a ban on the admission of goods (certain kinds of medical products) originating from foreign countries for the purposes of procurement for state and municipal needs in order to protect the domestic market of the Russian Federation”.
If the regulation is adopted, the state and municipal medical institutions will be forced to purchase medical equipment and products produced only in the Russian Federation in the Republic of Belarus or Kazakhstan.
The ban covers not only imported equipment or products, but also domestic products and products from the Republic of Belarus and the Republic of Kazakhstan, if the share of imported materials used in their production is over 50 per cent of the final price of the goods.
Hospitals will be prohibited to purchase dental and ophthalmic equipment, X-ray machines and scanners, defibrillators, nasal devices for lungs ventilation for newborn babies, intensive care incubators for premature babies, and many other devices. Over 100 types of medical equipment and health care products fall under the ban.
The authors of the regulation explain their actions by their concern for the national security and the desire to support domestic producers.
The YABLOKO party believes that the introduction of prohibitive measures for the imports of equipment and products by state and municipal medical institutions at present will adversely affect timely diagnosis of diseases and quality of healthcare for the population and also will contribute to the growth of stratification of the population as of the access to specialized and high-tech medical care (the ban applies only to state and municipal institutions and will not affect private medical institutions) .
There are only a few manufacturers and in some cases only one manufacturer in Russia for most of the imported products falling under the ban. This will boost monopolization of the market, encourage manufacturers’ cartel agreements, which would reduce competition in the market and lead to a drop in the quality of goods and price growth.
YABLOKO demands from the Government of the Russian Federation not to accept this regulation, but to develop other mechanisms for improving the competitiveness of Russian manufacturers of medical equipment and products.