NEW DELHI: Health Minister Harshvardhan on Friday underlined the need for streamlining the system for the distribution of free generic drugs to government-run health institutions at all levels across the country.
The Health Minister, who reviewed the implementation of the National Health Mission (NHM), said that the free drug programme’s formal launch would be preceded by working out all logistical details with respect to procurement and distribution in consultation with the state governments.
Recalling that as Delhi Health Minister he had implemented the WHO’s “Essential Drug Programme”, Vardhan pointed out that the ‘Delhi Model’ of discerning first the essential from the fluff, and then distributing them in the public health system, had got global recognition. He said that standard treatment protocols would be developed in consultation with the experts and coded to ensure that unnecessary and irrational administration of drugs was avoided.
He also added that women specialists would be given special status in the ministry’s new scheme of things. “As women are the worst victims of a dysfunctional public health system, I want their concerns to be addressed on a priority basis. The gender-blind nature of government delivery systems is proving counter-productive”, he added.
Hinting at reforms in the NHM, Vardhan said that the NHM would be made more participatory and inclusive by recruiting the synergy of voluntary sector professionals and experts in different specialisations.