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Mere 3,000 of 10,000 medical shops in city log in for e-sales

Though the Health department has allowed online sales of medicines, only those pharmacies that are registered with the State Drug Controller will be able to make use of the facility as of now.

Mere 3,000 of 10,000 medical shops in city log in for e-sales
Medicines being home delivered in the city


In Chennai, there are over 10,000 licensed medical shops, but a mere 3,000 shops have registered themselves to undertake door delivery.

The medical shops with permit can supply all the drugs on prescription, except the scheduled H1, while in scheduled H they cannot supply narcotic psychotropic.

As per the scheme, the public can also call the toll-free number and they will pass the message to the nearby medical shops of the customer. “We have not received any information from the head office regarding online delivery during the corona outbreak. If we receive an order, we will deliver.

Except for our branch, others are already into delivering medicines,” said Priya, who works at Apollo Pharmacy in Velachery. There are a few shops who deliver medicines at doorsteps even before the government order allowing door delivery of medicines. “We have been distributing for the past few years, and will continue to do so. Customers can order medicines online or over the phone,” said a staffer at Medplus in Kelambakkam.

But a similar facility is absent with many of the local medical shops. They are unable to take up door delivery mainly owing to non-registration and for lack of staff. However, there are some medical shops which undertake door delivery within the locality on receiving the prescription over the phone.

“We are already delivering medicines in the locality. But we have not registered under the licensing authority. Since this scheme is not implemented across the city, only a few pharmacies have been added. If our shop is also added in the list, we will register,” said Sathish Kumar, proprietor of Sri Sathish Pharmacy at Royapuram.

The door delivery option has come in handy for many pharmacies since people are being prevented from venturing out. More so, because senior citizens are the main customers.

“I have been treated at Government Stanley MCH and used to get medicines from the hospital. Since the lockdown began I am buying medicines from a nearby shop. My wife who is 72 years old is getting it, visiting three to four shops,” said M Ragavan, an 82-year-old resident of Old Washermanpet, welcoming the step.

Apart from the permit, the medical shops should register their email ID with the licensing authority. “Of the 10,000 plus licensed medical shops, so far 3,000 shops have registered, and many are in the process of obtaining the registration,” said K Sivabalan, State Drug Controller.

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