Pradhan Mantri Jan Aushadhi Yojana: Important points to Know

Introduction

Pradhan Mantri Jan Aushadhi Yojna (PMJAY) launched in October 2015, to provide quality generic medicines at very cheap prices so that it will be affordable to the masses through dedicated outlets. The primary aim of this scheme was to target the poor and disadvantaged section of the society who cannot afford to buy high cost drugs for their treatment. Under PMJAY low cost generic drugs are provided to all through exclusive outlets “Jan Aushadhi Medical Stores” so as to reduce the pocket expenses in healthcare.
This initiative was taken by Department of Pharmaceuticals in association with Ministry of Chemical and Fertilizers. Formerly this scheme was known as Jan Aushadhi Scheme. It was launched in 2008 and the 1st Jan Aushadhi Store was opened at Amritsar Civil Hospital in 2008.

Generic Drugs:

It is basically a chemical name of drugs. Those drugs which are identical in terms of dosage, strength, quality, effective performance and intended use with the branded drugs are known as generic drugs. The pharmacological effects are same as that of their brand name counterparts. Generic drugs are available at very cheap price as compared to the branded drugs with same performance.

Objective:

To bring down the healthcare expenses of every citizen of India through providing quality medicines at affordable prices and also to create awareness among the people about the importance and usage of generic drugs.

Mission:

  • To create awareness among the people regarding generic drugs and also encourage them for using this. 
  • To create the demand for generic drugs through private medical practitioners. 
  • Creating awareness that high price need not be synonymous with the good quality. 
  • All commonly used generic drugs to be provided. 
  • To make available more than 500 types of drugs. 
  • Now a days a total of 708 Jan Aushadhi Stores are opened under this scheme in 26 states, out of which maximum number of stores is in Uttar Pradesh (102). 

Who can Open Jan Aushadhi Store?

  • Any Non-Governmental Organisation, Co-operative Society, Charitable Institutions, Private Hospitals and Self Help Groups can easily open Jan Aushadhi Stores by following the guidelines as notified by the government. 
  • Government also provide one-time financial assistance of 2lakh for establishment and 50,000 as one time start-up cost for purchasing computer and other infrastructure support. 

How many drugs are covered under PMJAY?
At present 700 types of medicines are covered under this scheme.

Challenges in implementation:

  • Prescription problems – Generally Doctors don’t prescribe the generic drugs. 
  • Also if a doctor prescribes a branded drug and Jan Aushadhi Store (JAS) gives a generic drug equivalent to the branded one, it is technically against the law. 
  • Non availability of all types of drugs covered under PMJAY at the JAS. 
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