There is no “specific report” regarding the creation of a health database by e-pharmacies on their portal as per the Central Drugs Standard Control Organisation (CDSCO), said the Indian government on March 17, 2023 in the Parliament. Last week, the Health and Family Welfare department answered questions regarding the online sale of medicines, two of which were: whether illegal e-Pharmacies are also creating their own health data on their portal which is also a threat to personal health data and also against the PM Health data policy of NHRM; and if so, the corrective steps taken by the Government in this regard? To this, the Ministry answered that the concerned department does not have data regarding such a dataset by the e-pharmacies. If so, this raises questions about previous claims made by the government regarding the alleged misuse of data by these companies. Pharmacies misusing health data? As per source-based reports by Times of India and News18, the government was considering shutting down e-pharmacies. It suspected the platforms of collecting medicine-related data, leading to a possible increase in patient safety risks. Reports also talked about the government authorities were concerned about predatory pricing by these platforms. After the reports, over 12 companies reached out to the Ministry “seeking an audience” with officials. Yet on the same day, Minister of Health and Family Welfare Dr. Mansukh Mandaviya said that the government has no information on whether e-pharmacies maintain such data on their portals. So, what was their basis for claiming misuse…
Now Health Ministry says: ‘No report’ on the creation of health database by e-pharmacies
If the government is considering banning e-pharmacies over ‘misuse of data’ among other issues, what explains this response?
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