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Doctors to prescribe low cost generic medicines

Recently, the health ministry had issued notification making it mandatory for all the pharma companies to carry the name of drugs at least two fonts larger than the brand name.

Doctors to prescribe low cost generic medicines

New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday said that the government had fixed prices for as many as medicines for the benefit of the people as part of a comprehensive healthcare policy. Modi said, "Doctors write prescriptions in such a way that poor people do not understand the handwriting and he has to buy that medicine from private stores at high prices". He emphasized the need for a legal framework by which if a doctor writes a prescription, he has to write in it that it will be enough for patients to buy generic medicines and he need not buy any other medicines.

Modi said his government has brought in a health policy after 15 years and capped the prices of medicines and stents, which has angered some pharmaceutical companies. "In our country doctors are less, hospitals are less and medicines are expensive. If one person falls ill in a middle class family, then the financial health of the family gets wrecked. He cannot buy a house, cannot conduct the marriage of daughter," he pointed out. "It is the government's responsibility that everybody should get health services at minimal price," he added.

What are generic drugs?

A generic drug is a medication that has exactly the same active ingredient as the brand-name drug and yields the same therapeutic effect. It is the same in dosing, safety, strength, quality, the way it works, the way it is taken, and the way it should be used. Generic drugs do not need to contain the same inactive ingredients as the brand name product.

Although generic drug active ingredients are chemically identical to their branded counterparts, they are typically sold at a cheaper price than the brand-name drug. Generics are less expensive because the drug manufacturer does not have to duplicate the original clinical trials for effectiveness and safety, which lowers the cost to bring the drug to market. Generic drugs use the same active ingredients as brand-name drugs and work the same way. They have the same risks and the same benefits as the brand-name drugs.

According to the experts, more than 70% of the over Rs 1 lakh crore domestic pharmaceutical market is dominated by branded generics, whereas patented drugs make up to 9%. Modi also said that his government understands the value of a healthy society and had been taking one step after another so that poor people and middle class get quality health services.

Recently, the health ministry had issued notification making it mandatory for all the pharma companies to carry the name of drugs at least two fonts larger than the brand name. They have also issued orders to asking the doctors to write prescriptions with generic names of medicines and in legible hand writing. Modi also assured that the government will continue to take steps in welfare of common man.

PM Modi said the government has implemented the 'Pradhan Mantri Jan Aushadhi Pariyojna', where people get generic medicines from stores at reasonable rates. He also stressed on the importance of preventive health care saying if people adopt it, they will not have to visit hospitals. "Yoga is also very important for wellness and I am running a campaign to make it popular across the world," he said. He urges the well-to-do people to come forward and help in the health needs of the poor.

With Inputs From PTI

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