Under the Pradhan Mantri Bhartiya Janaushadhi Pariyojana (PMBJP), the general public has saved around Rs 15,000 crore in the last five years, the central government said on Tuesday.
Aiming to provide quality medicines at an affordable rate for the common man, especially the poor, the government has set a target to increase the number of Pradhan Mantri Bhartiya Janaushadhi Kendras (PMBJKs) to 10,000 by the end of March 2024. As on Monday, the number of stores has increased to 8735. Under the PMBJP, 739 districts of the country have been covered.
“In its journey of last 8 years, starting from the annual turnover of Rs 8 crore in year 2014-15, the Pharmaceuticals & Medical Devices Bureau of India (PMBI), the implementing agency of PMBJP, clocked its highest monthly sales turnover of Rs 100 crore in the month of May 2022, which in turn has saved around Rs 600 crore [for] citizens of the country,” the Ministry of Chemicals and Fertilizers said in a statement.
“In May 2021, total sales were Rs 83.77 crore and that was COVID-19 second wave period. People have been able to reduce their out-of-pocket expenditure on medicines with the government intervention of this noble scheme. At present, these Kendras make available more than 1600 medicines and 250 surgical devices including nutraceuticals, Ayush products and Suvidha Sanitary pads which are sold at Rs 1 per pad,” said the ministry.
Under PMBJP, new applications have also been invited to cover 3579 blocks of 406 districts to provide quality generic medicines through Jan Aushadhi Kendras to every citizen of the country. Residents of small towns and blocks headquarters can now avail the opportunity to open Jan Aushadhi Kendras. The scheme provides for incentive of Rs 5 lakh and special incentives of up to Rs 2 lakh for various categories, including women, SC/ST, hill districts, island districts and North-Eastern states. This will ensure easy reach of affordable medicine to the people in every nook and corner of the country, the ministry claimed.
“Accordingly, PMBI has strengthened the supply chain system by setting up of four warehouses at Gurugram, Chennai, Guwahati and Surat. In addition, there is a strong distributor network of 39 distributors across India to ensure timely supplies in every part of India,” the ministry said.
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