Last Updated on October 6, 2020 by The Health Master
The Karnataka drugs control department has issued a circular stating that Jan Aushadhi licenses should be issued only to registered pharmacists. This comes after a communication from the Central Drugs Standards Control Organisation (CDSCO) and the state health and family welfare department.
In the circular, Dr P B N Prasad, joint drugs controller, CDSCO noted that concerns were raised on issuing licenses to non-registered pharmacists to open Jan Aushadhi outlets.
The circular further states that action needs to be taken on top priority. The department has also instructed its enforcement team to submit all details of the licenses granted so far to the Jan Aushadhi outlets. These include information on the name of the firm, owner, and other details of the registered pharmacist with his registration number, said BT Khanapure, drugs controller, government of Karnataka.
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Earlier in August, the Karnataka State Registered Pharmacists Organization (KSRPO) had asked the Ministry of Chemicals and Fertilizers and its Bureau of Pharma PSUs of India (BPPI) to ensure that only qualified-registered pharmacists are made eligible to set up these outlets under the Pradhan Mantri Bharatiya Jan Aushadhi Kendras (PMBJAK) scheme.
This was because the Organisation was apprehensive that after the Union government’s announcement in early August on the two-fold increase in fund grant from the current Rs. 2.5 lakh to Rs. 5 lakh to prospective pharmacy entrepreneurs to set up Jan Aushadhi outlets, there could be mushrooming of non-registered players.
Communicating the same to the ministry of chemicals and fertilizers and the BPPI, Ashokswamy Heroor, president, KSRPO said, “In order to safeguard public health, we strongly suggest that the Jan Aushadhi licenses should be granted to firms, where the proprietor or the managing partner is a registered pharmacist. This will not only protect public health but also solve unemployment of registered pharmacists.”
In fact during the coronavirus pandemic, several small businesses have found it difficult to survive. Even during the national lockdown, it was only the pharmacy outlets which came under the essential services, continued operations unabated. Now entrepreneurs from non pharmacy sectors would eye entering into the Jan Aushadhi business.
Hence, we have indicated to the government on the need to ensure licenses for the Jan Aushadhi outlets should be given only to registered pharmacists, said Heroor.
Jan Aushadhi outlets are a good move by the government to sell generic medicines at a nominal cost and benefiting many economically backward families. But KSRPO had been observing that in most of these outlets medicines are being sold in the absence of the registered pharmacists. The basic reason for this major lapse is that such licenses are being granted to non-pharmacists, who appoint a namesake registered pharmacist, he said.
In order to bring in safe drug dispensing for the benefit of the patients, we call on the government to make sure that only qualified and registered pharmacists are at the counters to accept prescriptions and give the appropriate medicines, said Heroor.