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

Articles By Sharmila Mary Joseph

Addressing Primary Healthcare Deficiencies

The National Medical Commission Bill 2019 has delineated the role of community health workers in primary healthcare. However, the bill has neither given an unambiguous definition of these workers nor spelt out as to how they could be effectively utilised to expand the reach of primary healthcare in rural settings, where there is an acute shortage of doctors. Training and skilling of these workers are short-term arrangements to address deficiencies in primary healthcare. What is required in the long term is regular monitoring of primary healthcare services and incentivisation of rural health service.

Prices of Patented Medicines in India

Medicines with valid patents generally enjoy exemption from price regulation in most countries. In India, the Drugs (Prices Control) Order lays down the rules for regulation of prices of medicines through a National List of Essential Medicines, inserted as Schedule-I of theDPCO. While any medicine that is included in Schedule-I automatically qualifies for price regulation, theDPCO exempts patented medicines that have been developed indigenously from price control for a period of five years.Can patented molecules for emerging as well as infectious diseases be brought under price regulation in India?