Life in Iran TodayIran: Expensive Medicine, Cheap Human Life

Iran: Expensive Medicine, Cheap Human Life


A look at the equipment and weapons that the Iranian regime has been using against its people to suppress their protests is revealing the immense expense needed to ensure the stability of its reign.

With the regime’s security forces often using pepper spray against protesters, many people who suffer from Asthma and other respiratory problems are struggling with the lack of proper medicine to help them recover from these attacks. Recently the regime’s media reported that the steroid Fluticasone, used to treat those with Asthma and COPD (Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease), has become rare and when it is available it comes at extremely high prices.

Earlier this year, medicine across Iran became scarce and treatment costs skyrocketed, leaving thousands of people on the brink of bankruptcy for treatment costs.

In May, insulin was in scarce supply putting the lives of diabetics across the country in severe danger. Misleadingly, the Vice President of Food and Drugs of Isfahan University of Medical Sciences promised that he would solve that problem. In a report on May 7, published by the state-run news agency ISNA, he said, “We don’t say that we don’t have any problems or drug shortages, but the situation is improving. People were looking for insulin. There are still items that are not available in sufficient quantities.”

The problem was not only the high cost and scarcity of drugs. The regime’s inhuman policy to cancel the 42,000 rials preferred currency exchange rate increased drug prices. Almost all of the people who are now living in poverty are no longer able to settle their needs.

While quoting the regime’s head of food and drug organization Bahram Darai, on March 21, the state-run news agency ILNA wrote, “Imported drugs, up to 6 times, and domestically produced drugs increased in price by 30 to 100 percent, depending on the amount of raw material supply currency.”

While the situation was unbearable enough for many sick people, news of the export of medicine to Russia was published by the regime’s state media.

On October 16, the state-run website affiliated with the regime’s Trade Promotion Organization wrote, “The head of the trade development organization announced that Iranian medicines were being exported to Russia. The withdrawal of Western companies from Russia due to the sanctions has opened a suitable market for Iranian companies that can be exploited. Now good agreements have been made regarding the export of anti-cancer drugs.”

The regime is hurting the people in any way it can to ensure they stay put. Just last year, the regime’s behavior in preventing the import of COVID-19 vaccines led to the loss of the lives of more than 500,000 people, and today Iran is still one of the few countries around the world that are still struggling with this virus.

The regime’s officials tried to deny this latest news, fearing the people’s reaction in a situation where the country is witnessing daily protests. On November 9, the state-run daily Tejarat news wrote, “Recently, Sajjad Esmaili, the consultant of the Food and Drug Organization, said he will not give export licenses to any company to export Iranian drugs until the domestic needs are met. Meanwhile, on October 16, while the lack of medicine was mentioned many times by the media, the Deputy Minister of the Ministry of Industry, Mine and Trade spoke about planning to export medicine to Russia.”

They added, “With all this, the question is whether exporting to Russia is justified when the country is facing a shortage of medicines.”

According to the Transparency and Justice Watch Organization report, more than 200 pharmaceutical items in Iran are in short supply, of which 80 are in a very high-risk stage. At the same time, one of the regime’s MPs has announced a 700 percent increase in drug prices.

On November 12, the state-run daily Aftab wrote, “The price of medicine is increasing by 700 percent, the situation of people’s access to medicine is disastrous. People who have created this situation are looking for big profits.”

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