Celebrating 6th Jan Aushadhi Diwas [Current Affairs]

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Understanding Jan Aushadhi Diwas and Its Significance

India observes Jan Aushadhi Diwas on 7th March every year, a day dedicated to raising awareness about the benefits and importance of generic medicines. This observance highlights the pivotal role of the Pradhan Mantri Bhartiya Janaushadhi Pariyojana (PMBJP) in making healthcare affordable and accessible to all. Marking its 6th anniversary in 2024, Jan Aushadhi Diwas serves as a reminder of the government’s commitment to ensuring the well-being of its citizens.

The Genesis of Jan Aushadhi Diwas

The inception of Jan Aushadhi Diwas traces back to 7th March 2019, when Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced the annual celebration of this day. This initiative was kick-started to advocate for the use of generic medicines, with the first observance taking place in 2019.

The Role of Pharmaceuticals & Medical Devices Bureau of India

The Pharmaceuticals & Medical Devices Bureau of India (PMBI), under the Ministry of Chemicals & Fertilizers (MoC&F), spearheads the organization of Jan Aushadhi Diwas. It culminates the Jan Aushadhi Week, observed from 1st March to 7th March, emphasizing the criticality of generic medicines in the healthcare ecosystem.

Delving into the Pradhan Mantri Bhartiya Janaushadhi Pariyojana (PMBJP)

The PMBJP, initiated during the 11th Five-Year Plan (2008-12), aims to dispense quality generic medicines at economical prices. The scheme, operational through government and private partnerships, involves the establishment of Pradhan Mantri Bhartiya Janaushadhi Kendras (PMBJKs) across India to sell generic medicines at costs significantly lower than their branded equivalents.

Achievements and Goals

With a network of 10,000 Janaushadhi Kendras as of November 2023, the PMBJP boasts a product range that includes 1965 drugs and 293 surgical items. These products are available at prices 50%-90% lower than branded medicines. The government aims to expand this network to 10,500 Kendras by March 2025, further broadening access to affordable healthcare.

Quality Assurance and Standards

The PMBJP ensures that all medicines meet stringent quality standards. Every drug procured under the scheme is tested at National Accreditation Board for Testing and Calibration Laboratories (NABL) accredited facilities and adheres to World Health Organization – Good Manufacturing Practices (WHO GMP) standards.

Generic Medicines: Equally Effective, More Accessible

Generic medicines are defined as drugs that are chemically identical to their branded counterparts but are marketed under a non-proprietary name. These medications offer the same efficacy at a fraction of the cost, making them a vital component of affordable healthcare.

Ministry of Chemicals & Fertilizers: Steering India towards Health and Prosperity

The Ministry, under the leadership of Union Minister Mansukh Mandaviya and Union Minister of State Bhagwanth Khuba, is at the forefront of India’s efforts to enhance healthcare affordability through initiatives like the PMBJP.

Important takeaways for all competitive Exams

  • Ministry of Chemicals & Fertilizers (MoC&F), Union Minister – Mansukh Mandaviya (Rajya Sabha – Gujarat)
  • Union Minister of State (MoS) – Bhagwanth Khuba (Constituency: Bidar, Karnataka)

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