Flagging off of Jan Aushadhi Rath, Jan Aushadhi Mobile Vans and Jan Aushadhi E-rickshaws to raise awareness
Part of: GS-Prelims and GS-II: Issues relating to development and management of Social Sector/Services relating to Health
In News: The Jan Aushadhi Rath will travel 7 days covering 4-5 States and Vans and E-rickshaws will travel across Delhi up to 7th March to raise awareness at the grassroot level about the benefits of the Pariyojana and Jan Aushadhi generic medicines which are available at affordable prices for all.
About Jan Aushadhi Yojana
- Rationale: It is a well-known fact that branded medicines are sold at significantly higher prices in India. Given the widespread poverty across the country, making available reasonably priced quality medicines in the market would benefit everyone, especially the poor and the disadvantaged.
- Under the: Department of Pharmaceutical’s Bureau of Pharma PSUs of India (BPPI), under the Ministry of Chemicals & Fertilizers.
- Vision: To bring down the healthcare budget of every citizen of India through providing “Quality generic Medicines at Affordable Prices”.
- Create awareness among the public regarding generic medicines.
- Create demand for generic medicines through medical practitioners
- Create awareness through education and awareness program that high price need not be synonymous with high quality
- Provide all the commonly used generic medicines covering all the therapeutic groups
- Provide all the related health care products too under the scheme
Aim: To widely provide generic medicines to people across the country to make healthcare more affordable.
- Pradhan Mantri Janaushadhi Kendra is a medical outlet opened under the scheme which makes quality medicines available at affordable prices for all.
- “Jan Aushadhi Sugam” mobile app helps in locating nearest Janaushadhi Kendra and availability of medicines with its price.
- These centres across the country would also provide 75 Ayush medicines
What exactly is the difference between a generic drug and brand- name drug?
- When a company develops a new drug — often after years of research — it applies for a patent, which prohibits anyone else from making the drug for a fixed period. To recover the cost of research and development, companies usually price their brand- name drugs on the higher side.
- Once the patent expires, other manufacturers duplicate and market their own versions of the drug.
- Since the manufacture of these generic drugs do not involve a repeat of the extensive clinical trials to prove their safety and efficacy, it costs less to develop them. Generic drugs are, therefore, cheaper.
However, because the compounds in the generic versions have the same molecular structure as the brand-name version, their quality is essentially the same. The generic drug has the same “active ingredient” as the brand-name drug. This ingredient is the one that cures the patient; and other, “inert ingredients”, which give the drug its colour, shape or taste, vary from the brand-name drug to the generics.
- The prices of generic medicines are much cheaper than their branded equivalent.
- The generic drug does not have to undergo a complete clinical trial to be proved equivalent, the bioequivalence test is much cheaper than clinical trials making generic drugs cheaper.
- The government’s move assumes significance as medicines account for 70-75% of a household’s out of pocket expenditure on health
- The move will result into affordable access to quality medicines which is a part of free universal access to healthcare services.
- India being a world leader in generics, the dependency on imports of patent drugs will reduce improving our trade of balance.
News Source: PIB