Highlights

  • Free medicines in Punjab hospitals post Jan. 26
  • Ajoy Sharma issues urgent directives
  • Directives to all Civil Surgeons

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Free medicines for patients in govt hospitals across Punjab after Jan 26: report

Addressing the issue of accountability, Principal Secretary Sharma warned of strict actions against non-compliance. In the event of delays in submitting the required lists, the responsible Senior Medical Officer (SMO) will face personal accountability.

Free medicines for patients in govt hospitals across Punjab after Jan 26: report

Principal Secretary, Health and Family Welfare, Ajoy Sharma, has issued urgent directives to all Civil Surgeons, aiming to alleviate the chronic shortage of medicines in the state, The Tribune reported citing sources.

In a recent communication marked "most urgent," Principal Secretary Sharma instructed Civil Surgeons to promptly provide a detailed list of their medicine requirements. The directive emphasizes that, starting January 26, patients will not bear any costs for prescribed medications.

To ensure a comprehensive response to the medication needs, Civil Surgeons are mandated to confirm the availability of drugs and other medical consumables in their respective districts. They are further instructed to submit a comprehensive list covering a one-month requirement, along with a recommended buffer stock of 5-10%.

Addressing the issue of accountability, Principal Secretary Sharma warned of strict actions against non-compliance. In the event of delays in submitting the required lists, the responsible Senior Medical Officer (SMO) will face personal accountability.

The recent shortages in Punjab have notably impacted essential medicines, including paracetamol, painkillers, and drugs for conditions like blood pressure, diabetes, and acidity. The government, responsible for supplying over 300 medicines to hospitals, aims to dispense them free of charge. However, the absence of rate contracts for over 200 essential medicines on the 'Essential Drug List' has hindered their availability in hospitals.

In a bid to streamline the procurement process, Principal Secretary Sharma has urged all heads of health facilities to have plans ready for the swift transportation of medicines from warehouses within the next 24 hours. The move is expected to address the prevailing challenges and contribute to reducing the out-of-pocket health expenditures, which have been notably high in Punjab.


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