In the 90s India identified that availability, accessibility, and affordability of quality medicines to all is the major weakness in its drive for quality and affordable healthcare to all. JAS, the Jan audhashi scheme which was launched in 2008 by the UPA government aimed to counter high prices of branded drugs with affordable generic medicines sold at dedicated JAS outlets. The MODI government renamed the JAS as Pradhan Mantri Bhartiya Janaushadhi Pariyojana (PM(BJP), as usual, the shadow of BJP in its scheme. They increased the number of stores and basket of medicines and made promotions, advertisements and also insisted medicos in government hospitals to prescribe generic medicines to buy from PM(BJP) outlets. As always they change the names of UPA government schemes in shade of BJP, as usual, the PM(BJP) are out of stock and many generic medicines are often unavailable.
Most of the PM(BJP) stores have only 200 out of 600 medicines which are in the prescribed list where and non PM(BJP) store has an average of 2400 medicines. Noble as the PMBJP scheme is, it needs to be salvaged with PM Modi’s pragmatic ‘minimum government, maximum governance’ formula. The quarreling of some BJP executives against Thalapathys Mersal movie for delivering dialogues that were against the NDA government regarding the goods and service tax that created a buzz in the nation and maybe the producer benefited through some strong free political advertising for the movie which made huge collections in the box office.The Tamilnadu government doctors association has termed the portrayal of doctors and government hospitals as untrue and in bad taste.The TNGDA have insisted the movie directors be more responsibly in showing such scenes in a country like India.They all have time to take necessary actions against a movie which portrays the happenings in some hospitals but not to make medicines and medical services available and affordable to all to the maximum extent, though it’s a hard call in a country with huge mass. According to information received from the licensees, less than 70 Jan Aushadhi stores are now functional in Tamil Nadu against the 207 approvals given in the state. The accessibility affordability and availability not only falls on medicines, the first fit the medicos. The utilization of the situations in government hospitals, paying bribes for peons and assistants in GH, an ambulance driver demanding money in a crucial lifesaving situation, the Gorakhpur hospital tragedy, an unfit person giving anesthesia makes people and let’s not forget that a life was lost without any of these situations or treatments or unavailability of medicines, yes it’s Anitha from our own state fighting between her dream and NEET. We are living in a nation where hospitals are for saving lives is to eat lives? The disease that the whole nation is suffering from is forgetting everything as soon as possible and move on. Is there any medicine available under the PM (BJP) scheme to this mass disease? If so is it available, affordable and accessible? Who to be blamed now the government for introducing exams like NEET? The particular doctors for making the situations worse? The NPPA? The drug controller general of India? Or we the people?