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How do pharmacies work in India and How it should work?

Introduction

Pharmacy Industry is regulated industry in India and one needs to take retail drug license to open a pharmacy store in India.

Complete formalities, procedure and documents for pharmacy business setting up, you can read at our article: How to start pharmacy business in India? 

Pharmacy and chemist shop has some difference but still they are used as synonym for each other in India. As compounding is not a common practice in India nowadays, pharmacy and chemist shops are same at most of places. Check: How to start chemist shop in India?

Here we will use pharmacy word for all pharmacies, chemist shop and medical store etc.

For running a pharmacy, there are required to have retail drug license by fulfilling requirements like a registered pharmacist, adequate space and documents.

Registered Pharmacist

Registered pharmacist is a person who possesses minimum pharmacy qualification and training to become a pharmacist in India and his/her name is registered in concerned state pharmacy council register.

Space Required

Space required for opening a pharmacy store in India requires to have minimum of 100 square feet covered area.

Documents required for Drug Retail license:

  • Application in prescribed application form
  • Fee Challan
  • Appointment letter of a registered pharmacist (In case either of proprietor/partner/directors are not pharmacist)
  • Registration certificate copy of pharmacist (State Pharmacy council Registration Certificate copy)
  • Affidavit of registered pharmacist
  • Qualification certificate copy of registered pharmacist i.e. D. Pharmacy/B. Pharmacy/Pharma D certificate copy
  • Date of birth proof of registered pharmacist
  • Address proof of registered pharmacist
  • Shop possession proof (Ownership proof or rent agreement which is applicable)
  • Refrigerator purchase bill copy
  • Partnership deep/MOA/Registration copy if any
  • Affidavit of proprietor/partners/directors
  • Address proof of proprietor/partners/directors
  • Blue print/layout plan of shop in three copies
  • Any other documents asked by drug authority

How do pharmacies work in India and how it should work??

How it works?

Most of pharmacies in India work without presence of registered pharmacist in India. There is requirement of registered pharmacist to open a pharmacy in India but it is working only by rented license basis.

A pharmacy owner appoints a registered pharmacist but it is only at papers. He/she appoints pharmacist and give him very less monthly salary (in other words rent) and pharmacist are open to work at other places.

So, most of pharmacy stores in India, you will not find any pharmacist when you will go to get medicines and a 10th or 12th pass presence will dispense your medicine who even don't know proper english.

How It should work?

Under drug and cosmetic act & rules, and pharmacy practice regulation act, there is compulsion of presence of registered pharmacist when a medicine is dispensed. All medicines should be dispensed only under supervision of registered pharmacist.

Till a pharmacy store is open, there must be presence of registered pharmacist and when pharmacist is absent, there should not be any activity related to dispensing at pharmacy store.

How it works?

Second problem present in Indian pharmacy work is that you can get prescription medicines without prescription of a registered medical practitioner and there is also no maintenance of stock register for schedule H and H1 drugs, and other prescription drugs.

How It should work?

There should be no dispensing of prescription drugs without prescription of registered medical practitioner and there should be proper maintaining of stock register containing required details as per drug and cosmetic act & rules.

Conclusion

Major portion of pharmacy industry in India is unregulated sector. Minor portion including pharmacy chains and online pharmacies are regulated. 

Pharmacy industry in India is witnessing a major changes from last few years. Strictness of regulations and emergence of online pharmacies in India is challenging its status que and pressurizing unregulated player to change and prepare themself for future. 

Hope for better future of Indian Pharmacy Industry.

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