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LAHORE: The Punjab government is presenting the Punjab Medical Supplies Authority Bill 2017 in the current session of the Punjab Assembly under the express directions of the chief minister.

The aim of the authority is to procure drugs and medical equipment and supply them to the public health facilities in the province.

“We had sought final approval for the proposed draft law but the chief minister has ordered its presentation in the current session of the assembly for early passage of the law.

According to the draft law, the authority will procure quality drugs and equipment at competitive rates for the health facilities after prescribing standards, procedures, processes and guidelines for the purpose.

It will also prescribe drug formularies and specifications of equipment for various categories of health facilities, conduct or arrange for research relevant to its functions, pre-qualify firms, sole agents or authorised dealers for the procurement of drugs and equipment, prescribe standards and procedures for the storage and supply of drugs and equipment and ensure that drugs are stored under the prescribed storage conditions.

It will establish premises and warehouses for drug storage as per the best international practices or obtain such facilities from private sector, prescribe guidelines for proper storage and timely disbursement of the drugs to a health facility.

It will devise an annual calendar for the procurement of drugs and equipment.

It will, by regulations, categorise storage premises for drugs or equipment or both; and prescribe standards and procedures based on established scientific principles and international best practices for the storage and transportation of drugs and equipment.

It will issue a certificate for every storage premises and transportation vehicle in the prescribed manner which will be required to be displayed prominently.

Published in Dawn, October 23rd, 2017