20 Karunya Pharmacies Before March
By Pramod Thomas | Published: 03rd December 2013 11:38 AM |
The Kerala Medical Service Corporation (KMSCL), which had announced ambitious plans to open 35 Karunya community pharmacies last year, could only launch 15 outlets so far.
But the officials of the Corporation says they will make up for the lost time by opening the remaining 20 outlets before the end of March 2014. These pharmacies would provide medicines at 22 to 93 per cent discount to the financially less privileged in the state.
The KMSCL had launched the Karunya brand of pharmacies on January 12, 2012 with an outlet at the Medical College Hospital in Thiruvananthapuram, replicating the well established model of Jeevandhara Pharmacies of Andhra Pradesh Medical Services Corporation (APMSC). The idea was that the Community Pharmacy Services Division of KMSCL will procure the medicines directly from the manufacturers at lower rates without any tender.
R Kamalahar, Managing Director, KMSCL said Karunya outlets are functioning in all the medical colleges in the state.
“By March 2014 every district in the state would have these outlets. Once the 35 Karunya centres become operational we would be able to sell medicines worth `100 cr at a discounted rate. Karunya pharmacies in Malappuram, Kozhikode and Pathanamthitta districts would start functioning shortly,” he said.
Replying to an RTI query, the KMSCL had said that the state government has provided `23.6 cr as a one time amount for the initial expenses of Karunya Community Pharmacies.
Karunya pharmacy outlets are currently operational at Thiruvananthapuram Medical College, CHC-Kallara, District Hospital-Neyyattinkara, Govt. Victoria Hospital - Kollam, District Hospital - Harippad, Alappuzha Medical College, Kottayam Medical College, Thrissur Medical College, Kozhikode Medical College, District Hospital - Palakkad, District Hospital - Vadakara, District Hospital - Kannur, CHC - Kottarakkara. There are also outlets in Pamba and Sannidhanam.