Most of the branded drugs were being made available at 35 to 95 per cent discount at Karunya. Over 8,500 branded drugs were sold through Karunya.

More Karunya pharmacies will be opened in the State, Health Minister V.S. Sivakumar has said.

Addressing a high-level meeting here on Friday, he told officials to ensure that all essential drugs were available at Karunya pharmacies and to take immediate steps to overcome the shortage of any drug in these shops.

The meeting pointed out that the daily sales at Karunya pharmacies had gone up and the daily sale at the Thiruvananthapuram Medical College outlet alone stood at Rs.10 lakh. Most of the branded drugs were being made available at 35 to 95 per cent discount at Karunya. Over 8,500 branded drugs were sold through Karunya.

Government hospitals in the State had drug stocks for two to three months. Strict directions had been issued to district authorities to make available through local purchase, in case any drug falls short.