Pursuing case for independent ministry for pharmaceuticals: Ananth Kumar

New Delhi, Aug 29 (IANS) Chemicals & Fertilisers Minister H.N. Ananth Kumar on Monday said he is pursuing the case for making an independent ministry for pharmaceuticals so that all decisions regarding the industry could be taken under a single roof.

Speaking at a function here to mark the Foundation Day of the National Pharmaceutical Pricing Authority (NPPA), the minister noted that the pharmaceuticals industry has risen to almost $37 billion and Indian medicines are being exported to over 200 countries.

“Pharmaceuticals is a sunrise industry and the Government is keen to provide support to it through various means like pharmaceutical parks, medical devices parks, pharmaceutical clusters and promotion of innovation through Atal Innovation Scheme,” he said.

The minister also launched a mobile app developed by NPPA which shows the maximum retail price fixed by NPPA for various scheduled drugs on real time basis.

The application will be called “Pharma Sahi Daam”, Kumar said.

The minister said that amendments will be made soon to empower NPPA in gathering data and taking appropriate decisions for the drugs included in the NLEM (National List of Essential Medicines).

The minister advocated a ‘3A’ approach to achieve health security for every citizen of India.

Universal healthcare can be achieved only by ensuring the availability, affordability and accessibility (3A) of medicines to the common man.

Under the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, a two-pronged strategy is being adopted to provide cheap medicines to the common man — one is through regulating the prices by NPPA and another is opening of PM Jan Aushadhi Stores, the minister said.

He said that within one year, 3,000 PM Jan Aushadhi Stores will be opened in the country covering all districts and tehsils.

Most of the medicines in Jan Aushadhi Stores cost 30 to 40 per cent as compared to the market cost, he said.

–IANS

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