Glenmark Pharmaceuticals on June 20 had announced the launch of its antiviral drug Favipiravir, under the brand name 'Fabiflu', to treat mild to moderate COVID-19 cases in India. As per reports, based on clinical evidence and after the evaluation of data and in consultation with the Subject Expert Committee, the firm received the manufacturing and marketing approval from India's drug regulator on Friday, June 19.
Amid this, social media and WhatsApp was abuzz with claims that 'Livfavir, a variant of the generic Favipiravir which is manufactured by Livealth Biopharma Private Limited, is cheaper than Glenmark Pharmaceuticals' branded drug Fabiflu'.
The message further claims that while Fabiflu is priced at Rs. 103 per tablet; Livfavir is being sold at Rs. 20 per tablet.
In fact, a petition was also created at Change.org based on the viral message.
"Please sign and share this so that the request reaches the ears of the concerned authorities and the consumer rights can be restored at the earliest!" reads the petition.
Below is the WhatsApp Forward:
*AN EYE OPENER*— 'Raja Raja' Unicuesrini1 (@universesrini) June 23, 2020
Fabiflu 200 mg. has been priced at Rs.103 per tablet by Glenmark. After my inquest, I found, already there exists a brand of Favipiravir in the Indian market with the brand name 'LIVFAVIR' marketed by a Mumbai based company Livealth Biopharma Private Limited --- pic.twitter.com/IcIRpsNeAz
Livfavir, Manufactured By Livealth Biopharma Is Cheaper Than Glenmark's Fabiflu.
The claim is misleading as the company has launched the product and later withdrew it.
The Logical Indian reached out to Bhavesh Kanabar, Promoter, Livealth Biopharma, regarding the WhatsApp Forward. "This is Fake News," Kanabar said on being asked about the viral claims. They also said that the company is not going to launch the product in the market.
Further, Livealth Biopharma debunked the claims on their official Twitter account as well.
"We are not marketing any such product and have already withdrawn our product "Livfavir" which created this misunderstanding," they wrote.
There is One Rumor circulating on Whatsapp linking our company Livealth Biopharma Pvt Ltd marketing product similar to "Favipiravir" of "Glenmark".— Livealth Biopharma Pvt Ltd (@livealth) June 24, 2020
We are not marketing any such product and have already withdrawn our product "Livfavir" which created this misunderstanding.
The company also clarified that their turnover is Rs.10 crores and not Rs.120 crore as the message claims.
We as Livealth Biopharma are small company having Turnover of INR 10 Crores but fake message portrayed our company of INR 120 Crore.— Livealth Biopharma Pvt Ltd (@livealth) June 24, 2020
We will take appropriate action against the one who generated this message.
Also, The Logical Indian searched for Livfavir on major Indian online pharmacies including 1MG, Medlife, Pharmeasy, Practo. The dug is not available on any of these portals.
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