Union Health Minister J P Nadda said the government would open 300 Affordable Medicines and Reliable Implants (Amrit) outlets and 3,000 Jan Aushadhi stores this year for ensuring availability of drugs at affordable prices.
Inaugurating two Amrit outlets at Postgraduate Institute of Medical Education and Research (PGIMER) in Chandigarh, he said, “Our plan is to have 300 outlets in the country this year and we have requested the state government to provide space for opening Amrit stores.”
At Amrit outlets drugs are be sold at highly subsidised rates.
Nadda said average discount available at such stores on branded medicines are 69 per cent. “The discounts ranges between 8 per cent and 90 per cent,” he said.
With the two outlets here, there are now nine such shops in the country and four more are to be opened soon in central hospitals, he said.
He claimed at nine Amrit outlets, drugs worth Rs 23 crore have been sold so far savings Rs 16 crore to patients.
He also said 3,000 Jan Aushadhi stores will also be opened this year. “Practically, every district will have six-seven such shops,” he said.
Jan Aushadhi stores are aimed at providing quality medicines at affordable prices to the masses.
The Minister also said the Centre would set up 20 cancer institutes in the country with an expenditure of Rs 120 crore.
“Besides, 50 tertiary cancer centres will be opened with cost of Rs 50 crore which will provide best facilities to the cancer patients,” he said.
He further said the ministry was working on taking care of non-communicable diseases like lifestyle-related ailments in a big way and emphasised on the need for inter-sectoral coordination in this regard.
On the occasion, Nadda attended the first convocation of National Institute of Nursing Education and awarded degrees to more than 500 students.