Doctors say that government wants to push across substandard cheap drugs in the market in the name of cheap health care.
The Modi government will frame a law to ensure that doctors prescribe generic medicines which are cheaper than branded drugs. The government’s initiative will make benefit poor patients who are unable to afford the rising cost of medicines. The Medical Council of India has already warned doctors that action will be taken against them if they failed to follow the directive of prescribing drugs in generic names.
Generic medicine is a drug which is manufactured by other than the innovator or branded companies in simple terms. It means that the doctor should write paracetamol instead of Calpol or Crocin or another brand. The government has taken this step to prevent doctors from accepting favours from pharma companies for prescribing medicines marketed by them. Such initiative will break the nexus between doctors and pharma companies.
According to Wikipedia, 75% of counterfeit drugs have their origin in India?
The government is not addressing all these problems and want to push across substandard cheap drugs in the market in the name of cheap health care making common man a guinea pig. As per media reports the cheap generic drugs have more than 1000% profit margins as compared to branded companies.
Dr. Anshuman Manaswi said, “I am a great fan of Augmentin, Supacef, Voveran, Levofox, Bevon, Crocin. But I have not even met their representatives for ages. So there is no nexus. In this era, where government apathy is the norm rather than exception, it doesn’t come out with clear cut data about the quality control of the generic / branded medicines. So who is to be blamed for poor quality of drug resulting in loss of lives?”
“How will one ensure that antibiotic is not acting because of poor quality or due to antibiotics resistance? The government is neither protecting doctors’ interest including their safety or public interest, their health.
With this decision our problems will increase manifolds, I am sure. Doctors must have the freedom to write what they want to write. Or else how will they have any clue about what is happening?,” he added.
There are innovative ways.
- Stop business of medical representatives
- Let the pharma company advertise their brands by sending educational material etc.
- Let them not even sponsor the conferences directly. Let it be done through IMA/ MCI etc.
“Chemists should not be permitted to decide the fate of the patients or let the chemist or the government take the responsibility of drug failure. Government cannot have knee jerk reaction to a problem where in they are part of the problem because they can’t ensure quality of generic drugs,” said Dr Manaswi.
“Other measures like making it compulsory for PM, ministers, president, MP, MLA, government officials etc to have generic medicines only will set the system straight. Enough is enough. We have to fight or we will perish.
Choice is ours,” he added.
Dr Deepak Chaturvedi said, “I don’t see any harm in it provided government assures that Generic drugs coming in the market are well controlled and of good quality. The government is not addressing the root problem of the nexus if any. The government has failed to provide quality health care.”