BENGALURU: Bengaluru may see a shortage of drugs post-implementation of the GST. While bigger pharmacy chains have stocked enough to sustain for a week, smaller ones seem to be running out of some essential drugs.
With the wholesale drug sellers not billing drugs to retail pharmacists, there has been no supply of drugs for nearly a week now in the city. This has led to a sharp drop in drug stocks.
“The wholesale dealers are updating their software with revised prices. Due to this, companies are not supplying medicines for the past five days. Hence the shortage,” said Yatish, a pharmacist in Rajajinagar.
Bharat, a pharmacist from Jayanagar, said there is a shortage of drugs for blood pressure and diabetes. “When someone has a headache, there are several options in pain killers but it’s not so for diabetes and blood pressure,” he added. He explained that retailers would have suffered a loss and have not therefore not stocked too many medicines. “Since the demand from customers is high and there is no supply, it’s pharmacies that are under loss,” he said.
Govind, who runs a pharmacy at Shivananda Circle, said for the past two days, a message circulating on acute shortage of drugs has prompted many customers to resort to panic buying. Druggists say it may take a week for the situation to normalise.
Big pharma chains like Apollo and MedPlus, however, said they have enough stock. Meanwhile, online pharmacies have taken advantage of the situation, offering discounts.