The Prime Minister, Narendra Modi, today, interacted with the beneficiaries of Pradhan Mantri Bhartiya Janaushadhi Pariyojana and store owners of Jan Aushadhi Kendras, through video conference.The Prime Minister informed that more than one crore families are benefitting from the cheaper and quality medicines available at the Janaushadhi Kendras every month. Prices of more than 1,000 essential medicines are being regulated and their prices are cheaper by over 50% including those used in the treatment serious diseases like cancer. Many families from poor and middle income groups are now spending much lower on purchase of medicines through these shops. This has resulted in a savings of more than Rs. 12,000 crore, he said.Interacting with beneficiaries, the Prime Minister said that the Janaushadhi network will be expanded especially in the J&K, North-East, hilly and tribal/rural areas.Prime Minister said the central government and the state governments are taking all the required steps to tackle the threat of corona virus. He said India also has very skilled doctors, medical staff and resources as well as complete awareness among the citizens. He said that vigilant citizens have a very important role in preventing the spread of the corona virus.Prime Minister said that the importance of frequent washing of hands cannot be overemphasised. Also one should cover one’s mouth and nose while sneezing or coughing to prevent infecting others, he added.“All the confirmed cases of Corona virus infection are being kept under necessary supervision. But if a person suspects that he has come in contact with an infected partner, then he need not panic but go to a nearby hospital for a check up. The rest of the people in the family are also more prone to infection, in which case they should also undergo necessary tests”, Prime Minister added.Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi requested to avoid any kind of rumour mongering about Corona Virus and advised to seek and follow only the doctor's advice.“And yes, the whole world is making a habit of Namaste. If for some reason we have given up this habit, then it is also the right time to reintroduce this habit of joining hands in Namaste’’, he added.
During the Prime Minister’s interaction with Januashadhi beneficiaries in Varanasi, the Union Minister for Chemicals and Fertilizers, Shri D.V. Sadananda Gowda was also present. In his address, Shri Gowda said out of 6,209 Jan Aushadhi Kendras in the country, more than 5,200 stores have been opened in the last three years. He said the Government will add around 4,000 Janaushadhi stores soon, taking their numbers to 10,000. Sales have increased from Rs. 7.29 crore in 2013-14 to an estimated Rs. 425 crore in 2019-20. All Kendras can be located and prices of medicines compared with help of the mobile app ‘Janaushadhi Sugam”, he added.Union Minister for Environment, Forest & Climate Change, Information and Broadcasting, and Heavy Industries & Public Enterprises, Shri Prakash Javadekar visited a Janaushadhi Kendra in Pune and enquired about the medicines available there.Addressing function on the occasion of Janaushadhi Diwas, Shri Javadekar said various schemes and efforts taken by the Prime Minister such as lowering the rates of medicines, stents and implants, setting up Janaushadhi shops, Ayushman Bharat scheme, promoting Yoga and Fit India Movement to keep the ailments at bay, shows his concern for the poor.Interacting with Janaushadhi beneficiaries in Pulwama district of the newly carved out Jammu and Kashmir UT, the Prime Minister said the Minister of State for Shipping (Independent Charge) and Chemicals & Fertilizers, Shri Mansukh L. Mandaviya is present amongst you all and being a Minister in the concerned Ministry, he will resolve any grievances or difficulties related to the Janaushadhi scheme.Addressing the gathering, Shri Mandaviya said the prices of essential medicines have been capped which has an effective and positive impact on the National List of Essential Medicines. Till now, the price of 957 drugs has been put into price fixation which resulted in approx. Rs. 5,416 crore savings, he said.
During his interaction with seven Janaushadhi Kendras through video conference, Shri Narendra Modi took stock of the Janaushadhi scheme with beneficiaries, store owners, doctors and pharmacists. A large number of women keenly participated, underlining the Government’s efforts to prioritize women's health. During the interaction, beneficiaries informed the Prime Minister how their expenditure have substantially gone down after they started purchasing medicines from the Janaushadhi Kendras and how the savings are now being utilized for nutritional diets and taking care of their families. A beneficiary from Pulwama recounted that his expenditure has come down from Rs. 10,000 to Rs. 1,000, Similarly, a beneficiary from Dehra Dun stated that her medical expenditure has gone down from Rs. 5,000 to Rs. 1,500. A Janaushadhi store operator from Varanasi informed the Prime Minister that apart from making available cheaper and quality medicines, this facility has helped her to organize the local women into a Mahila Mitra Sangathan and they are helping in spreading awareness not only about the cheaper medicines but also about personal hygiene which has led to greater use of sanitary napkins (available at very low rates) by the women. A Janaushadhi Kendra operator at Muzaffarpur, Bihar stated that the Kendra helped him to survive and lead a respectable life after he lost a limb in a Naxalite attack. The Kendra operator at Coimbatore stated that the Janaushadhi Kendras have helped him to also provide medical consultancy by doctors at very low rates. A beneficiary from Assam’s Kamrup also informed about major savings on account of cheaper and quality medicines that he is getting from the Janaushadhi Kendra. The beneficiaries felt the need for expanding the Janaushadhi Kendra network.Jan Aushadhi scheme, started in 2008, focuses on price fixation of various drugs and medicines. From merely 86 outlets in 2014, there are as many as 6,209 Jan Aushadhi Kendras today, covering 700 out of 728 districts across the country. Supplying affordable 900 generic medicines, other wellness products and 154 surgical items, the Jan Aushadhi Kendra is world’s largest chain of pharma stores covering all major therapeutic categories such as anti-infective, anti-diabetic, anti-cardiovascular, anti- gastrointestinal and even anti-cancer. This scheme also provides a good source of self-employment with sustainable and regular earnings.