Wednesday, 19 April 2017

IMA welcomes PM’s push for Generic Drugs with a caveat

IMA welcomes PM’s push for Generic Drugs with a caveat The Indian Medical Association (IMA) has welcomed the push for generic drugs coming from the Prime Minister himself. It is the policy of IMA to help the Government to make available all drugs at an affordable cost. For years IMA had been demanding dedicated fair price medical shops under the Government. IMA had welcomed the Jan Aushadhi scheme of the Prime Minister and has adopted the scheme. A Jan Aushadhi generic drugs outlet runs from IMA HQs in New Delhi. IMA has also been promoting Jan Aushadhi centers in private hospitals. IMA feels that no new legislation is required to ask the doctors to prescribe generic drugs. The MCI Etiquette for doctors has already stipulated this. The concern of the medical profession regarding spurious and substandard drugs is yet to be addressed. The Government has around 1800 Drug Inspectors for the entire country, a number which is grossly inadequate. Indiscriminate dispensing of antibiotics and other prescription drugs by doctors not qualified in Modern Medicine, Quacks and by over-the-counter sales has led to emergence of serious resistant microorganisms. Strict implementation of the existing laws should suffice in this regard. The Government itself admits that less than 0.01 percent of the drugs produced in the country are tested for quality. It will not be fair on the part of the Government to expect doctors to prescribe substandard drugs. The Government should urgently improve the administration regarding drugs by bringing the department under Ministry of Health rather than Ministry of Chemical and Petroleum affairs. Quality assurance laboratories should be urgently installed in every state. The loopholes in governance between the Central and State Governments should be cemented. IMA on behalf of the Modern medicine doctors requests the Prime Minister that his Government should follow up with all the substantial measures to facilitate widespread usage of generic drugs. Points 1. IMA is for promotion of drugs in National List of essential medicines, which are price capped and cheaper. 2. IMA policy is to write NLEM and non-NLEM drugs with consent of the patient 3. .IMA policy is to promote Jan Aushadhi drugs 4. No one will be able to get Jan Aushadhi drugs if the words ‘Jan Aushadhi’ are not written on the prescription. Jan Aushadhi therefore is also a brand 5. All NLEM drugs should be available under one window pharmacy. 6. Not keeping NLEM drugs should be considered a crime. 7. CGHS, PSUs and IRDA should mandate reimbursement of only NLEM drugs unless reasoned out. 8. IMA is for writing the generic name of the drug alone, but also recognizes the need to mention the name of the company of whose generic the patient is going to buy. The same should also be freely available. 9. Stents have become cheaper because they have been now included in NLEM. All other devices and disposables should also be brought under NLEM. 10. The answer therefore is ‘Write generic name of the drug, Choose from NLEM, Write Jan Aushadhi or a standard company name’. Dr K K Aggarwal National President IMA With contributions from Dr R N Tandon Hony. Secretary General, IMA

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