Doctors at the country’s premier medical care centre All-India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) have been directed by the hospital through a circular on Friday that “as far as possible, every physician should prescribe drugs with generic names”. The doctors are also required to ensure that there is a rational prescription and use of drugs.
MCI directions In a consolidated effort by the Union Health Ministry to promote the use of generic drugs in its institutes, the Medical Council of India had previously noted that all the registered medical practitioners under the Indian Medical Council Act should comply with “prescribing generic medicines”.
AIIMS in its latest circular has noted that this is in continuation of an earlier circular dated March 14. AIIMS Deputy Secretary Sanjiv Chaturvedi in a circular signed by him has noted: “As you all must be aware that the Institute has started providing free medicines to all patients attending AIIMS out patient department w.e.f. March 3, this year. Only generic medicines and those mentioned in National List of Essential Medicines of India are available free of cost to patients through valid prescription of AIIMS doctors. This is applicable to fixed dose combinations also, as appropriate.”
Bid to improve patient care The entire exercise – part of the Union Health Ministry programme – is aimed at the need to promote the use of generic medicines in clinical practice.
“Generic medicines play a significant role in rational prescribing, reducing treatment costs and hence improving patient care,” noted AIIMS circular.
Mr. Chaturvedi noted: “All the doctors in AIIMS are hereby advised to henceforth prescribe only generic medicines. In case a doctor wants to specifically prescribe branded drug, he/she should have justified /convincing reasons for the same.”
What are generic drugs?
Generic drugs are copies of brand-name drugs that have exactly the same dosage, intended use, effects, side effects, route of administration, risks, safety, and strength as the original drug. In other words, their pharmacological effects are exactly the same as those of their brand-name counterparts.