The Prescription: 17th February 2018 Issue
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Pooja Khaitan

“This will be the world's largest government-funded healthcare programme," he told parliament in his Budget speech. "The government is steadily but surely progressing towards a goal of universal health coverage."

These were the very words of our Hon’ble finance minister of India, Shri Arun Jaitley who has been receiving mixed emotions from the citizens on proposal of the union budget 2018.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi won a thumping mandate in 2014 promising, among other things, a universal healthcare plan to protect India's poorest. This Budget is the Modi government's last before the country votes in May next year. Get a detailed insight on what the Pharma industry and hospital sector feel on the budget in our PSM India capsules.

While Kerela, Punjab and Tamil Nadu have been declared as best performers in the Healthy States Progressive India Report, we have allegations of corruption, slackness and negligence levelled by residents of three villages of Lucknow. Read more on this and other important news such as a website to act as a watchdog for private health sector, a centralised portal for regulating online pharmacies in our country and a WHO approved vaccine carrier to prevent in-transit vaccine freezing, under Drug laws and Policy Injections and National Injections section of this issue.


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Stay Healthy. Stay Protected.

Pooja Khaitan

The Prescription


“We are slowly progressing towards universal health coverage as we introduce the world’s largest healthcare programme this year. The creation of health and wellness centres will ‘bring healthcare closer to home’. These centres, 1.5 lakh in number, will provide free essential drugs and diagnostic services.”

Shri Arun Jaitley
Finance Minster

PSM India Capsules

Pharma Industry And Hospital Sector Upbeat On Support Given By Union Govt In Budget 2018

Pharma and the hospital sectors have stated that healthcare seems to be biggest beneficiary in this Union budget. Announcing two major schemes for health, one being health and wellness centres with a ₹ 1200 crore allocation for these schemes, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said that the 1.5 lakh health centres will bring healthcare to people’s homes for non communicable disease and women/child health.

Read More
Beware Of Over-The-Counter Help

Often patients take medicines by themselves for simple ailments such as fever, headache, cough, cold and backache. The symptom may be relieved but the underlying illness remains. Fever may be due to urinary infection, upper respiratory tract infection, pneumonia, typhoid, sinusitis, liver disease, dengue, leptospirosis or it might be a simple viral fever. The treatment of each condition is different. So it is better to get evaluated for the cause of the fever and then take medicine. Even high-end antibiotics are available over the counter (that is without doctor's prescription). This can lead to inappropriate use of the drug, inadequate or wrong treatment; and it can lead to drug resistance. Painkillers for headache and backache taken for long can cause serious kidney and liver damage. And the underlying cause of the pain still remains! The disease has to be treated; not just the symptom.

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Drug Laws & Policy Injections
NITI Aayog Launches ‘Healthy States Progressive India Report’; Kerala, Punjab, Tamil Nadu Best PerformersNew Delhi, 9 Feb 2018: In an effort to better assess health outcomes across India, the NITI Aayog on Friday launched the Healthy States Progressive India Report. Released by NITI Aayog CEO Amitabh Kant, Ministry of Health Secretary Preeti Sudan and India country director of World Bank Junaid Ahmad, the report is the first step to establish an annual systematic tool to measure and understand the complexity of nation’s performance in health.Read More
NHRC Notice To Centre, DCGI Over Study On Antibiotics Sale New Delhi, 7 Feb 2018 (PTI) The NHRC has issued notice to the Centre and the drug-control authority over a study, which claimed that millions of unapproved antibiotics were being sold in India each year, posing a threat to the global fight against the spread of drug-resistant microbes. According to the study published in the British Journal of Clinical Pharmacology, multi-national pharmaceutical companies continue to manufacture drugs using dozens of unapproved formulations, despite the global health crisis of rising antimicrobial resistance.Read More
Cabinet Approves Rationalization Of Autonomous Bodies Under Department Of Health & Family WelfareNew Delhi, 7 Feb 2018: The Union Cabinet chaired by Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi has approved the proposal for closure of Autonomous Bodies, namely, Rashtriya Arogya Nidhi (RAN) and Jansankhya Sthirata Kosh (JSK) and the functions are proposed to be vested in Department of Health & Family Welfare (DoHFW). Read More
Website To Act As Watchdog For Private Health SectorNew Delhi, 4 Feb 2018: With several cases of medical negligence and violation of patients’ rights now becoming public knowledge, a website intends to play the role of a watchdog for private health practitioners by compiling the bad experiences of patients on a single platform. Read More
CDSCO Soon To Finalise Centralised Portal For Regulating Online Pharmacies In The CountryMumbai, 2 Feb 2018: Inching closer towards a policy on the use of information technology on online pharmacy, Drug Controller General of India (DCGI) informed that a centralised portal for regulating online pharmacies may come anytime during this year. Read More
The Price Of Healthcare CappingNew Delhi, Jan 2018: The year gone by was pivotal for healthcare and public policy making for the sector. The National Essential List of Medicines (NLEM) and Drugs Price Control Order (DPCO) regimes along with mandatory price capping for select medical devices became the mainstay of public policy interventions to curb costs of healthcare. Today, prices for 849 formulations under the DPCO order along with coronary stents and orthopedic implants are under the price control regime. The Government has claimed multiple benefits of this action in multiple election campaigns. Read More
Pharma Injections
ASCI Upheld 65 Complaints Against Healthcare Category And 3 In Personal Care CategoryMumbai, 8 Feb 2018: The advertisements given below were picked up through ASCI’s Suo Moto surveillance of print and TV media via the National Advertisement Monitoring Services (NAMS) project. Out of 178 advertisements, total of 152 advertisements were considered to be misleading. Of these 56 advertisements were concerned Healthcare, 92 belonged to the Education category, One belonged to Personal Care category and three belonged to “others”.Read More
Hyderabad: Crackdown Brings Six Drug Firms Under Lens HYDERABAD, 6 FEB 2018: Telangana Drug Control Administration (DCA)’s crackdown on errant companies has resulted in various courts in the state convicting six drug companies and their managements based on five cases filed by the drug controller in January.Read More
Greed For Profit In Pharma Sector Helps Drug Racketeers Make Money Vijayawada, 5 Feb 2018: Aggressive marketing strategies by pharmaceutical companies to promote their products are helping racketeers introduce spurious drugs in the market. Read More
Pfizer, ICMR Partner To Deal With Antimicrobial Resistance MUMBAI, January 2018: The Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) and Pfizer will set up a centre in New Delhi, to combat antimicrobial resistance (AMR). The project will help address the growing AMR threat in India, Pfizer said on the agreement signed between the two organisations. Read More
WHO List Of Epidemic-Prone Diseases That Need More R&D Investment Geneva, 9 Feb 2018: For the purposes of the R&D Blueprint, WHO has developed a special tool for determining which diseases and pathogens to prioritize for research and development in public health emergency contexts. This tool seeks to identify those diseases that pose a public health risk because of their epidemic potential and for which there are no, or insufficient, countermeasures. The diseases identified through this process are the focus of the work of R& D Blueprint. This is not an exhaustive list, nor does it indicate the most likely causes of the next epidemic. Read More
Tensions Growing In India Over Dependence On Chinese APIs London, 9 Feb 2018: An increased dependence on the import of active pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs) from China is raising national security concerns in India, with the Health Ministry contending it is technically destroying indigenous manufacturing, reports The Pharma Letter’s India correspondent. Read More
Drug Dopes
Updated LIST OF NEW DRUGS APPROVED FROM 01-01-2018 TILL DATE BY NEW DRUGS DIVISION, CDSCO, FDA Bhawan, New Delhi List of New Drug Approved by FDA Read More
Sample Medicines Worth Crores Seized, 2 HeldBijnor, 10 Feb 2018: In a major haul, a joint team of the drug department and police raided a house in Sambhal district on Friday morning and seized a huge quantity of sample medicines that was to be sold to quacks in rural areas. According to the officials, 50 sacks of drugs valued in crores were seized from the house. Read More
Maha FDA Seizes Spurious Drugs Worth ₹ 95000Mumbai, 8 Feb 2018: The Maharashtra Food and Drug Administration (FDA) seized spurious drugs worth ₹ 95,000 in a raid last week from Kalachowki-based distributor Kailash Pharma, and from a retailer. An FIR was filed in connection with the case at Kalachowki police station. The FDA seized a stock of fake Calcimax 500 tablets, a drug that is originally manufactured by Meyer Organics Pvt Ltd. Officials said that after investigations, they found Kailash Pharma had purchased the drug from another wholesaler in Vapi, Gujarat. Read More
Generic Medicines Off Pharma Outlet Shelves Hyderabad, 8 Feb 2018: Lack of access to essential medicines for malaria, tuberculosis, diabetes and HIV/AIDS continues despite attempts to make them easily available, a report published in the Journal of Global Health said. The survey found that competition within India’s vast market for generic drugs has created a perception that generic drugs are available all over the country. Read More
Easy Availability Of Antibiotics Led To India's TB Epidemic Panaji, 3 Feb 2018: India made a big mistake in making antibiotics freely available over the counter. This allowed antibiotics overuse, leading to rising cases of drug-resistant tuberculosis in India, 1993 Nobel laureate Richard J Roberts said here. Read More
Developing Advanced Therapeutics For Cancer THIRUVANANTHAPURAM, 3 FEB 2018: The Kerala State Industrial Development Corporation (KSIDC) has announced plans to establish a joint venture at Bio-Park Trivandrum to develop advanced therapeutics for cancer and other diseases. Read More
National Injections
After Outrage Over Mass HIV Infections In Unnao, Uttar Pradesh Government Transfers SMO LUCKNOW, 9 FEB 2018: Amidst angry protests and allegations of corruption, slackness and negligence levelled by the residents of three villages in the grip of HIV infliction, Chief Medical Superintendent Dr PK Dohre of Bangaramau Community Health Centre (CHC) was transferred on late Thursday evening. Dr Dohre had to face villagers ire during a visit to Prem Ganj village along with a team of UP Aids Control Society (UPSACS) officials on Wednesday. Read More
804 Complaints Of Misleading Advertisements Of Ayurvedic And Herbal Products Reported During The Last Two Years: AYUSH MinisterNew Delhi, 9 Feb 2018: Increasing number of alleged to be misleading advertisements of Ayurvedic and other such products are being reported. Ministry of AYUSH has come across 804 instances of misleading advertisements/claims allegedly of herbal/AYUSH products & services including Ayurvedic medicines during the period of last two years and current year from April, 2015 to January, 2018 as reported from the Advertising Standards Council of India (ASCI) and the Grievances Against Misleading Advertisements (GAMA) portal maintained by the Department of Consumer Affairs.Read More
WHO-Approved Vaccine Carrier To Prevent In-Transit Vaccine Freezing Commercially Available New Delhi, 7 Feb 2018 (ANI-NewsVoir): This week, the first commercially available freeze-free vaccine carrier will begin introductory field trials in Nepal. This follows the World Health Organisation (WHO) announcement that the Indian-made carrier using PATH's "Freeze-Safe" reference design passed WHO Performance, Quality, and Safety (PQS) laboratory tests for User Independent Freeze Prevention, which prequalifies it for use in global immunisation programs. Read More
Hyderabad: Infected Syringe Jabs And Dialysis Push 100 Into HIV Death Jaws HYDERABAD, 8 FEB 2018: Contaminated syringes and blood products, blood transfusion and dialysis are inflicting scores of people with the dreaded HIV as they walk out hospitals, diagnostic labs and blood banks in Telangana. Read More
Expert Committee On Stents Rules Against Dissimilar Price New Delhi, 5 Feb 2018: Global stent makers’ attempt to skirt price caps in India by introducing advanced stents in a new category has failed, with a government committee deciding against creating such a category. Read More
Global Injections
Courier Caught Bringing Ketamine Through Dublin Airport Jailed Dublin, 7 Feb 2018: A courier who was caught transporting €119,000 of ketamine through Dublin airport to offset a drug debt has been jailed for four years. The court heard that father-of-two Conor Freeman (33) had amassed a €5,750 cocaine debt.. Read More
Beware Of Herb-Prescription Drug Adverse Reactions, Especially In CVD, Cancer Patients Tygerberg, South Africa, 7 Feb 2018: Which commonly used herbal products have the potential to alter prescription drug effectiveness or create dangerous side effects? Read More

Drug Combinations Improve First-Stroke Risk Reduction Los Angeles, 7 Feb 2018: Two or more drugs are better than one when it comes to reducing first-time strokes. That’s according to a presentation at the recent American Stroke Association’s International Stroke Conference 2018 in Los Angeles. Researchers report that a combination of an antihypertensive with a cholesterol-reducing agent reduced first-time strokes by 44%.Read More

Naming Tool For Biologic Medicines Released; Ensures Compliance With FDA, WHO Standards ARLINGTON, Va., 8 Feb 2018 /PRNewswire: The Alliance for Safe Biologic Medicines (ASBM) announced today that it has developed a web-based tool for the naming of biologic medicines to quickly ensure compliance with naming standards set forth by the FDA and World Health Organization (WHO). The tool, called "SuffixAudit", will be made available to regulators and manufacturers.Read More

US FDA Seeks Input On Product-Specific Guidances To Facilitate Generic Drug Development Maryland, 9 Feb 2018: FDA has published 57 product-specific guidances, including 35 new guidances and 22 revised guidances, describing the Agency’s current thinking and expectations on how to develop generic drug products that are therapeutically equivalent to specific reference-listed drugs. Read More

Edible QR Codes May Lead To Custom-Made Medicines London, 5 Feb 2018: Scientists have developed a way to print edible QR codes using drugs, paving the way for medicines that are tailor-made for a patient’s needs. For the last 100 years, researchers have constantly pushed the boundaries for our knowledge about medicine and how different bodies can respond differently to it.Read More


NABP Finds Fake Online Pharmacies Are Offering Fentanyl For Sale At An Alarming Rate

February 9, 2018: NABP Internet Drug Outlet Report_February 2018 The National Association of Boards of Pharmacy (NABP) has just released their Internet Drug Outlet Identification Program Progress Report for February 2018. NABP has conducted an annual survey of Internet drug outlets for the last nine years, and this year it is finding that fake online pharmacies are rushing to get on the fentanyl bandwagon.

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Former College Football Player Caught With 3 Liters Of Liquid Fentanyl

February 9, 2018: Kody Krusinski, a former football player at Adrian College in Michigan has been indicted on drug charges, after police found him in possession of liquid fentanyl and anabolic steroids while investigating a domestic violence incident, according to WLNS.

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Frequently Asked Questions Q1. What is the Role of Micronutrients in Food Products?
Answer: Micronutrients are nutrients that are required in very small amounts in our diet on a daily basis in order to replenish any deficits that may occur in our body. The standard Indian diet is usually deficient in many of the micronutrients that are essential for the proper functioning of the body. There are over fifty chemical elements in our body, which are required for various physiological functions such as growth, repair, and regulation of vital body functions. Micronutrients fall into two categories: (i) inorganic or elemental and (ii) vitamins. The first category includes the following: iron, iodine, fluoride, zinc, copper, cobalt, chromium, manganese, molybdenum, selenium, nickel, tin, silicon and vanadium. Read More>>>


Is India Ready For The E-Pharma Revolution?

This article is contributed by our subscriber, Dr.Hembindu Pallavi, Mumbai, Maharashtra. Incase you too wish to share articles on healthcare, and see them published here, please mail them to our Editor-in-Chief,

Digitisation is not just a corporate buzzword, but a way of life in a quaint country in the Baltic region of Northern Europe called Estonia. Promoted by the government as a cost-saving, efficient and equalising force, everything – from elections and banking to education and healthcare – in this innovative digital society, with a population of 1.3 million, works in a virtual, transparent and secure manner. A recent article in The New Yorker described how the automated system works so seamlessly that private enterprises are now building on the ubiquitous Estonian government platform named X-Road. Interestingly, the neighbouring Finland has also started using X-Road, paving the way for a “novel internationalism”. Read More

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Dr. Aditya, Prof. Medicinal Chemistry Fake medicines are of either minimal or no therapeutic effect. So, we should try to be cautious about them. Thanks to PSM-India for helping us in understanding them better!
Shri. Rakesh Mahajan, businessman“The Prescription” is providing us with much needed guidance to get rid of spurious medicines from India and we appreciate its hard work!
Deepak Goel, academician Grateful to PSM India for keeping us updated with various happenings on unsafe medicines and developments in the healthcare sector in our country!
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