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Budget 2017: announces amendments in drugs and cosmetics rules

Moneycontrol Bureau

Finance minister Arun Jaitley on Wednesday announced a slew of measures to improve the healthcare ecosystem of the country in the budget 2018, including amendment of the Drugs and Cosmetics Rules besides deciding a deadline to eradicate life threatening diseases such as Kala-Azar.

The amendment of the rules will ensure that the cost of drugs will go down. It would also have new rules to regulate medical devices.

"These rules will be internationally harmonised and attract investment into this sector. This will reduce the cost of such devices," said Jaitley.

"Poverty is usually associated with poor health. It is the poor who suffer the maximum from various chronic diseases. Government has therefore prepared an action plan to eliminate Kala-Azar and Filariasis by 2017, Leprosy by 2018 and Measles by 2020," he added.

The budget also mentioned about setting up of two new All India Institutes of Medical Sciences in Jharkhand and Gujarat.

"We welcome the move of government for amending the drug rules to allow reasonable medicines reaching out to masses in a better way. The amendments in Drugs and Cosmetics Act will improve the way pharma sectors is serving people in the country," said Pradeep Dadha, chief executive officer and founder of online pharmacy Netmeds.com.

"Budget 2018 has brought a great boost to healthcare and digital economy. Increased government focus on health care, especially on women health which has been untouched for long, will provide a strong foundation for startups like Ela which focuses on women reproductive health," said Ritu Singh, co-founder, Ela.