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Peethaambaran Kunnathoor, Chennai June 06 , 2019
Congratulating Sripad Yesso Naik on his assuming office as the Minister of Ayush for the second term, the Chennai based Centre for Traditional Medicines and Research (CTMR) appealed to the minister to establish ‘Jan Aushadhi’ model Siddha medical stores in all major cities and Ayush hospitals in the country to make quality traditional medicines at affordable prices.

On the way to Delhi to submit a memorandum to the minister, the CTMR secretary, Dr. T Thirunarayanan, has responded to queries from Pharmabiz that the Siddha community in Tamil Nadu now needs the ministry’s special attention and focus on Siddha stream to promote the method of treatment and Siddha drugs in national level. Jan Aushadhi model shops for Siddha will help promote the system and the drug industry in places where the system is currently alienated or made inaccessible to people, especially to the Tamil diaspora who are mostly the followers of the Siddha system.

The secretary of CTMR will hold discussion with the Ayush minister and hand over the memorandum seeking his immediate intervention. CTMR is an NGO, doing researches in Indian medicines and providing training to Siddha practitioners, medicinal plant cultivators and manufacturing units.

According to him, lack of marketing facilities for Siddha medicines is the major problem faced by this sector and practitioners. To help promote marketing of this age old traditional system, the ministry of Ayush should prepare a plan of action and implement it with the support of state Ayush departments and NGOs like CTMR.

“A lot of people are coming to the National Institute of Siddha at Tambaram every day for collecting medicines for lifestyle and other diseases. Most of the visiting patients are from far of places, and they spend a lot of money to get their medicines from NIS. And, there are long queues of patients in the government Siddha medical colleges and in district hospitals. This rush can be averted if facilities for purchase are made in each hospital or in cities by establishing government sponsored medical shops for Siddha. We are proposing Jan Aushadhi model medical shops in all major cities and government hospitals all over India”, said Dr. Thirunarayanan.

He said the most wanted medicines used for diseases like arthritis, diabetes, hypertension and cancer are madhumega churnam, mahavallathi lehiyam, amukkara churnam and certain kinds of thailams (medicated oils). These are often not available in government hospitals or in the NIS. The ministry of Ayush should take initiative for manufacturing these essential medicines and sell them through the proposed Jan Aushadhi Siddha or Indian medicine shops at reasonable prices. If all kinds of Siddha medicines are available anywhere in the country, the acceptance of the treatment and drugs by people of other states will automatically increase. Only government can do something for this, he said.

Further, CTMR wants the Ayush ministry to advise all state governments to open Siddha wings in the general hospitals and Ayush medical colleges in the capital cities as well as in district levels. Government should provide financial support to start a minimum of 100 Siddha clinics on pan India basis under national Ayush mission (NAM).

And as a special case for south India where Siddha is popular, government should provide grants for opening Siddha wings in all the primary health centres. The national health mission supported Siddha wings in the hospitals in Tamil Nadu, Kerala and Pondicherry must be converted into full time health centres.

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