The Karnataka State Registered Pharmacists Association (KSRPA) is approaching state pharmacy councils to pass a resolution for the amendment in the Drugs and Cosmetic Act 1940 and Rules 1945. The association will also be approaching pharmacy colleges for passing the resolution. The key objective is to change the name from chemists and druggists to pharmacy and ensure more employment.
The association has also written a letter to the DCGI proposing the grant of medical shop licences to registered pharmacists only. Presently, the licenses are given to ownership cum registered pharmacists and appointed pharmacists. If the recommendation is considered by the central authority then the medical shop licences will be granted to only registered pharmacists.
Ashokswamy Heroor, President, Karnataka State Registered Pharmacists Association commented, “The rules were made during Britishers’ time. Considering the changes since then it is an apt time to make the amendments in the existing Act and Rules. Therefore, the KSRPA has highlighted prevailing issues faced by the qualified registered pharmacists in the country to the Pharmacy Council of India (PCI) and the state PCIs to pass the resolution for amendments in the existing Drugs and Cosmetics Act 1940 and Rules 1945.”
Heroor continued, “In our country, the profession of pharmacy is very well established. Almost all states have drugs manufacturing units, pharmacy colleges, drug control department and active pharmacy councils, to safeguard the rights and privileges of the registered pharmacists, by virtue of the enforcement of Section 42 of the Pharmacy Act, 1948.”
“The Pharmacy Council (PCI) is doing a yeoman service. It is enforcing education regulations of the Pharmacy Act, 1948 very efficiently throughout the nation. Recently, the PCI has enacted Pharmacy Practice Regulations (PPR), 2015, which has helped registered pharmacists to understand their real status in the society, across the globe and to find decent jobs with decent incomes and to recover their professional charges. Due to these professional activities of the PCI, the registered pharmacists of our country are honoured the world over. Despite their professional standards, ethics and proficiency, our registered pharmacists are highly underpaid or unemployed or underemployed. Very few employment opportunities are available in the organised sector and the government sectors,” he added.
“Therefore, the only way to help registered pharmacists and to strengthen the noble pharmacy profession is by modifying rule 64 (1) of The Drugs and Cosmetics Rules, 1945. Rule 64 may be amended so that a medical shop licence should be granted only to a registered pharmacist, or in case of a firm, the registered pharmacist must be a proprietor or the managing partner or the managing director,” he said.
If these amendments are brought about in the Drugs and Cosmetics Rules, 1945, unemployed registered pharmacists will get proper employment.
“Though selling scheduled drugs in the absence of a registered pharmacist is an offence, they manage because of their lobby. Professional registered pharmacists are doing odd jobs. There are a number of registered pharmacists whereas the medical shops are only a few. This shows the enormous number of registered pharmacists seeking employment. The association has also proposed that there should be at least two registered pharmacists per shop. In this circumstance, we request to pass a resolution in the State Council to this effect and forward it to the PCI and the State Government for further action,” informed Heroor.
Presently, there are a total of 33 state pharmacy councils and more than 1000 pharmacy colleges in the country.