ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

Manu KanchanSubscribe to Manu Kanchan

The Pharmaceutical Industry Has Vested Interests in Making Arguments against Generic Drugs

The announcement by the central government about bringing a law to ensure that doctors prescribe generic drugs only, has brought strong reactions from the pharmaceutical industry especially on drug quality and the price issues. The arguments put forth by the industry regarding these two issues are not completely true and appear to be coming from vested interests of the industry itself.

Hospital Pharmacies

Patients are being forced to buy high-priced drugs and medical devices from hospital pharmacies. With hospitals increasingly operating as for-profit businesses, these pharmacies are an important revenue source for hospitals. In essence, the in-house pharmacy is a spatial monopoly within the premises of the hospital with the patients obliged to buy from it at prices dictated by the management.

Business of Hospitals

Serious ethical implications emerge when private hospitals are run as corporate entities and doctors working in these hospitals are given targets to bring in a certain number of patients for hospitalisation and conduct a certain number of surgeries and diagnostic tests to plump up the bottom line. In a quest for profits, corporate hospitals seem to forget that their primary job is to provide appropriate and timely treatment to patients.
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