Amidst the rising trend of doctors and pharma companies propagandizing patients towards expensive medicine brands, the Central Government is now looking forward to place a legal framework to ensure that doctors prescribe more generic and cheaper medicines to patients, as announced by PM Modi.
While introducing a new scheme and while inaugurating a multi-speciality hospital at Surat, Modi said,” We are starting Pradhan Mantri Bhartiya Janaushadhi Pariyojana for cheaper medicines in hospitals. Doctors write prescriptions in such a way that poor people do not understand the handwriting, and he has to buy medicines from private stores at high prices. In the coming days, the government will bring in a legal framework under which the doctors will have to prescribe generic medicines, which are cheaper than equivalent branded drugs, to patients.”.
Modi also said that the prices of 700 medicines have been capped so that everyone can afford medicines and drugs are available at reasonable rates. According to the statements, the government has framed rules in such a way that medicines that are available at Rs 1200 will soon be sold at Rs 70 to Rs 80. Apart from medicines, the prices of ailments used for treating heart disease have also been capped. Outlining the series of measures planned by health ministry, PM said that a draft has been issued to pharma companies to carry generic name of drugs on pack with fonts that are at least two font size larger than the brand name.
Besides this, the Medical Council of India has issued orders to all state and central government hospitals to prescribe generic medicines in legible looking handwriting. Since advertising prescription drugs is not allowed in India, the pharma companies have been pushing their medicines through doctors, chemists and distributors in lieu of freebies, incentives and excursion offers. But PM has assured that the government will take measures in welfare of health of common man and will make healthcare affordable in India.