Rajasthan Medical Council while expressing concern over rising complaints that doctors are prescribing unnecessary medicines has asked the state government to keep a close watch on the doctors.
The council has suggested that the state government should ask doctors to prescribe only generic medicines and monitor the prescriptions so that no unnecessary medicines are given.
There have been instances wherein doctors have insisted that patients visit their clinics or residence for check ups which are avoidable. "A doctor should not be allowed to pressurize patients to come to his clinic or residence for consultancy", said the medical council.
There are over 6,000 doctors in Rajasthan's government run hospitals, dispensaries and primary health centres. As per the recommendations of the medical council, the state government has directed all of them to prescribe generic medicines, a senior official in the medical & health department said.
The salts used in generic and branded medicines are the same and are used in the same manner and proportions, but branded medicines are generally costlier than generic ones.
As per the new orders the doctors will now have to prescribe the name of the salts, instead of a brand name.
Similar directives in this regard have been issued in the past, but so far it has failed to dissuade doctors from prescribing branded medicines. This time, all the chief medical and health officials (CMHOs) have been directed to keep a close tab on doctors and to identify those flouting this rule.
The treatment could become 40-50 percent cheaper with the use of the generic medicines, an official at medical & health department said.
However, doctors feel that prescribing generic medicines is not feasible. "Only some shops, majority of which are in cooperative sector, sell generic medicines and a patient gets whatever branded product the chemist sells", a doctor on anonymity said adding that before going in for any directive the government should arrange for better supply of generic medicines.