First AMRIT outlet opened at AIIMS Delhi for selling affordable drugs

281

Who: AMRIT pharmacy outlet
Where: AIIMS, New Delhi
What: Opened
When: 15 November 2015
Why: For selling affordable drugs for cancer

Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare on 15 November 2015 launched the Affordable Medicines and Reliable Implants for Treatment (AMRIT) pharmacy outlet at the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) in New Delhi.

The purpose of the first of its kind outlet is to reduce the expenditure incurred by patients on treatment of cancer and heart diseases by 50 to 60 percent and has the following features

• It is a retail pharmacy outlet that sells drugs and implants for the two ailments-cancer and heart diseases-at highly discounted rates.
• It would be selling 202 cancer and 186 cardio-vascular drugs and 148 types of cardiac implants at very affordable prices.
• It has been floated in a tie-up with government-owned HLL Lifecare Ltd (HLL).

Based on the outcome of the AIIMS outlet, this initiative will be taken to other central government hospitals and Regional Cancer Centres in partnership with the HLL.

Significance of AMRIT

The AMRIT initiative has been launched amid statistics that peg Indians diagnosed with cancer at 7 lakh every year. About 2.8 million people have cancer at any point of time and 5 lakh die of the disease each year.

Further, the annual figure of women being diagnosed with breast cancer in India is 145000, as per the WHO. Further, a significant number of patients (nearly over 50 per cent) stop visiting hospitals after two or three cycles of chemotherapy due to unaffordable costs.