Prelims level : Schemes Mains level : GS-II Welfare schemes for vulnerable sections of the population by the Centre and States and the performance of these schemes; mechanisms, laws, institutions and Bodies constituted for the protection and betterment of these Vulnerable Sections.
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  • Recently, Pharmacists, popularly known as “Swasth ke Sipahi”, of Pradhan Mantri Jan Aushadhi Kendra, are delivering essential services and medicines at doorstep of patients and elderly under Pradhan Mantri Bhartiya Janaushadhi Pariyojana (PMBJP) of the Government of India.

About PMBJP:

  • It is a campaign launched by the Department of Pharmaceuticals, Govt. Of India.
  • It aims to provide quality medicines at affordable prices to the masses through special kendra’s known as Pradhan Mantri Bhartiya Jan Aushadhi Kendra.
  • Its implementing agency is Bureau of Pharma PSUs of India (BPPI), which has been established under the Department of Pharmaceuticals, Govt. of India, with the support of all the CPSUs.

About the features of PMBJP:

  • It ensures access to quality medicines. It extends coverage of quality generic medicines so as to reduce the out of pocket expenditure on medicines and thereby redefine the unit cost of treatment per person.
  • It creates awareness about generic medicines through education and publicity so that quality is not synonymous with only high price.
  • It is a public programme involving Government, PSUs, Private Sector, NGO, Societies, Co-operative Bodies and other Institutions.
  • It creates demand for generic medicines by improving access to better healthcare through low treatment cost and easy availability wherever needed in all therapeutic categories.

About Generic Medicine:

  • There is no definition of generic or branded medicines under the Drugs & Cosmetics Act, 1940 and Rules, 1945 made thereunder.
  • Generic medicines are generally those which contain same amount of same active ingredient(s) in same dosage form and are intended to be administered by the same route of administration as that of branded medicine.
  • The price of an unbranded generic version of a medicine is generally lower than the price of a corresponding branded medicine because in case of generic version.
  • Drugs manufactured in India are regulated by irrespective of whether they are generic or branded, are required to comply with the same standards as prescribed in the Drugs and Cosmetics Act, 1940 and Rules, 1945 made thereunder for their quality.

About Drugs and Cosmetics Act, 1940 and Rules 1945:

  • It regulates the import, manufacture and distribution of medicines in the country.
  • It also ensures that drugs and cosmetics sold in India are safe, effective and conform to state quality standards.
  • It entrusts various responsibilities to central & state regulators for regulation of drugs & Cosmetics.
  • The related Rules,1945 contains provisions for classification of drugs under different schedules and prescribes guidelines for the storage, sale, display and prescription of each schedule.
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