Chandigarh 28th November: The PGI Medical Technologists has strongly condemned the commercialization of health services by PGI management, which has further put burden on poor and needy patients. The treatment will be out of reach for ‘Aam Aadmi’ at PGI. The Chemist Shop in PGI Emergency Complex has been auctioned on rent for Rs. 38 lakh per month plus 10.2 Service Tax. Further, the Chemist will appoint at least 10-15 employees to provide round the clock services plus Electricity Bill. The approximate expenditure on these heads will be around 1,20,000 per month. The daily rent will come out to be about Rs. 1,50,000. The ultimate consumer i.e. the ordinary Patient will bear the brunt.
It is the shortsightedness and undemocratic act on the part of PGI to make money by renting out shops at such high rates at the cost of general public and poor patients. Rather, the PGI Administration should ask the Chemists to provide drugs and medicines on actual bill cost plus 10% profit rather allowing the Chemist to sell drugs and medicines on MRP. There is steep difference, more than 100% to 1100%, between the actual cost and MRP on Generic as well as patent / branded drugs. The Central Government, Ministry of Chemical and Fertiliser and Ministry of Health and F.W. have miserably failed to control the MRP vis a vis the cost price (against bill) on which the Government gets Sales Tax. In some cases, the actual cost of drug (10 Tablets) is about Rs. 2.50 whereas the MRP is about Rs. 33. The Pharmaceutical Companies are paying tax on Bill Cost whereas the patients are charged on MRP. The huge difference between the actual cost and MRP is going on under the garb of R&D, donations for Conferences and Commissions. In some cases, the MRP of generic drugs and branded / patent drug is same where the bill price is different. There is strong lobby of Pharmaceutical Companies who are providing Election Funds to political parties, therefore, they escape legal actions. It is high time that such malpractices must come to an end and a strict control on MRP on drugs and medicines be ensured to bring desired relief to ‘Aam Aadmi’.
It is the need of the hour that the ‘Ayush‘ services may be strengthened at PGI. Further, PGI MTA has been making appeals since the year 2000 that some NGO or Retired Employees should come forward to open Chemists Shop at PGI on no profit no loss basis. It will help to bring down the treatment expense by 30% to 50%. The PIL in the Hon’ble High Court in the matter has failed to bring the desired relief, so far.