Pradhan Mantri Bhartiya Jan Aushadhi Scheme
If you search for good quality medicine and want it at affordable prices, it would not be possible to get them. To make affordable and quality medicines a reality in India, the Department of Pharmaceuticals has taken their initiative a step further by launching the Pradhan Mantri Jan Aushadhi Scheme. This is a two way benefit scheme in which the customers as well as pharmacist would both be benefitted. The drugs covered in this scheme would be generic drugs that would be available at lesser prices than the market price and this way people could have access to the expensive drugs at discounted prices.
This yojana is set to be launched in October 2015.
Who is eligible to open a Jan Aushadhi Store?
In case of an individual pharmacist applying for the store, he/she should not be employed at any other place. Moreover, the applicant of the store should have a sound financial capacity along with available space for opening the store.
What is meant by Generic Medicines in Jan Aushadhi Scheme?
In simpler words, generic medicines are those medicines which are not branded but have the same efficacy as that of their branded and expensive counterparts. Generic medicines are quite affordable but work with the same efficacy.
Who would coordinate the Jan Aushadhi Scheme?
The Department of Pharmaceuticals has established a special wing known as Bureau of Pharma Public Sector Undertakings of Indian (BPPI), which would take care of the entire operations under the Jan Aushadhi Scheme. It would take care of procurement, marketing and supply of these generic medicines throughout the country.
How would be the efficacy, safety and quality of medicines ensured in Jan Aushadhi Scheme?
The batches of medicines would be procured from CPSU and a number of private suppliers who would be tested under NABL certifications. The safety and quality of the scheme would be taken care of in this way. People have this misconception that unbranded medicines are not as effective as that of their branded counterparts, which is simply a myth.
Which medicines would be available from Jan Aushadhi Stores and what would be their cost?
Almost all of therapeutic medicines would be available from any Jan Aushadhi Store. At least, this is the sole aim of BPPI. There is a specific website of Jan Aushadhi Scheme, the list of whose medicines can be viewed at the official website www.janaushadhi.gov.in. There are already a huge number of medicines listed on this website and the list is being updated and added on a daily basis.
How many Jan Aushadhi Stores have been opened so far?
So far, 164 Jan Aushadhi Stores have been opened, only 87 are functional as of now. The list of functional Jan Aushadhi Stores and their locations can be viewed on the official website of Jan Aushadhi Scheme.
The Jan Aushadhi Stores would run as per their opening and closing hours, i.e. from 08 in the morning to 08 in the evening.
What are the requirements for opening a Jan Aushadhi Store?
Following are the requirements for opening a Jan Aushadhi Store by an individual or an entity:
- The applicant must have their own space where they have to open the store. The property/space could be rented or leased.
- The minimum required space for the store is 120 sq. ft. This minimum area has been adjudged by the BPPI.
- The applicant should have an active TIN Number along with Sale License from a competent authority, i.e. Retail Drug License.
- The applicant should either be an unemployed pharmacist himself/herself or should employ a certified pharmacist, whose registration number along with State Council should be provided in the application.
- The applicant should also have their financial status up to date for the last three years. Their accounts should be in the form of audited account. They should showcase their sales return as well as bank statements.
What is the process and procedure of opening a Jan Aushadhi Store?
The BPPI has directed all the state governments to open Jan Aushadhi stores in their states and facilitate the entire process in coordination with the department of health. Necessary space and other arrangements would be provided by the department of health of the respective state government to open these Jan Aushadhi Stores.These stores would be opened within the hospitals at a location which is easily accessible to the OPD patients and should have a minimum area assigned for the store. The hospital medical staff would also be directed from the state government to prescribe generic medicines as much as possible so that the out of the pocket cost for any patient goes down substantially.
How is the government supporting those opening Jan Aushadhi Stores?
The government has charted out certain incentives that would help and facilitate the opening of the stores. The government would provide a financial assistance of up to Rs two lakh to the owners of the store along with a further Rs 50,000 assistance for purchase of computer hardware and other infrastructural support.
As a regular incentive the store owners would be a 16 per cent discount on the MRP of the generic medicines. This would be a pure margin on the price of the medicines that would be the profit for the store owners. Along with this, the government would also provide a maximum and minimum incentive to all store owners based on their overall sales per year.
Jan Aushadhi Scheme is a noble scheme launched by the government of India and would go a long way if the stores are offered to genuine owners and the process of providing generic medicines to the patients is followed in a transparent manner.