Govt hospitals asked to open own pharmaciesIn a bid to make medicines more affordable, the government has directed state-run hospitals across the country to set up their own pharmacies within the next six months.
In a bid to make medicines more affordable, the government has directed state-run hospitals across the country to set up their own pharmacies within the next six months.
To establish the drug
stores that aim to provide medicines at subsidised rates, the Health Ministry has allocated over Rs300 million to various central and district-level hospitals.
Bhogendra Dotel, spokesperson for the ministry, said they have allocated Rs3 million for central hospitals, Rs2.5 million for regional hospitals, Rs2 million for sub-regional facilities and Rs1.5 million for zonal hospitals.
The money would be
used to prepare the infrastructure required for setting up the pharmacies.
Health Minister Gagan Thapa said last week that
one of his priorities was
to establish pharmacies
on the hospital premises. “This will also reduce the unnecessary expenditure
of people in health care,”
The Hospital Pharmacy Service Directives-2013 is aimed at providing medicines at cheaper prices.
The concept of on-premises pharmacy was introduced
in the country by the Manmohan Cardiothoracic Vascular and Transplant Centre at the Tribhuvan University Teaching Hospital. The policy was adopted by other hospitals such as Gangalal Heart Centre and Patan Hospital later.
State-run hospitals have
been defying frequent directives from the government to open in-house pharmacies.
In 2014 when the ministry first attempted to enforce its decision, only the Gorkha District Hospital—out of the 101 government hospitals—set up its own pharmacy.
Apart from hefty commissions paid by pharmaceutical companies to officials and doctors, hospitals make
money from rooms rented out to the private pharmacies.