The National List of Essential Medicines 2022, which includes 384 medications across 27 categories, was announced on Tuesday by Union Health Minister Mansukh Mandaviya, according to a statement from the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare.
“Several antibiotics, vaccinations, anti-cancer medications, and many other critical drugs will become more affordable and cut patients’ out-of-pocket costs,” wrote Mandaviya in a tweet.”
“…National List of Essential Medicines (NLEM) plays an important role in ensuring access to affordable, high-quality medications at all levels of healthcare, which will increase the availability of cost-effective, high-quality medications and help citizens spend less out-of-pocket on healthcare, “the statement from the ministry citing Mandaviya.
The primary goal of NLEM is to promote rational use of medicines taking into account the three important aspects i.e., cost, safety, and efficacy. Speaking at the occasion, the minister stated that the “essential medicines” are those that satisfy the priority health care needs, based on efficacy, safety, quality, and total cost of the treatment.
The medicines in NLEM are classified based on level of healthcare system as- P- Primary, S- Secondary and T- Tertiary, according to the health ministry. It also aids in optimal utilisation of healthcare resources and budget; drug procurement policies; health insurance; improving prescribing habits; medical education and training for UG/PG; and drafting pharmaceutical policies.
The idea, according to Mandaviya, is founded on the idea that prescribing a small number of properly chosen drugs will result in higher-quality care that is both more affordable and better medication management.
The NLEM, he continued, is a dynamic document that undergoes regular revisions to take into account shifting public health goals and new findings in the field of pharmaceuticals. The National List of Essential Drugs was created for the first time in 1996, and it has since undergone three revisions in 2003, 2011 and 2015.
The revision of NLEM 2022 was completed following extensive collaboration with all relevant parties, including academics, businesspeople, and public policy professionals, as well as with key publications like the WHO EML 2021.
For inclusion in NLEM, the following standards are followed:
- Act as a resource for ailments that are a challenge for India’s public health
- Drugs Controller General of India: possess a licence or approval (DCGI)
- have a demonstrated safety and efficacy profile based on research
- be comparatively economical
- adhere to the most recent treatment recommendations
- Under the Indian National Health Programs, recommended. (For instance, Ivermectin is a part of the 2018 Accelerated Plan for the Elimination of Lymphatic Filariasis).
- One prototype or the medically best-suited medicine from that class should be provided when more than one medication from the same therapeutic class is available.
- The cost of the entire course of therapy is taken into account, not the cost per pill.
- Typically, fixed-dose combinations are not mentioned.
- As and when necessary, vaccines are a part of the UIP (e.g. Rotavirus vaccine).
Here is a list of all medications.