May 22, 2020 (LBO) – The possibility of investing money belonging to the Employees Trust Fund (ETF) and the Samurdhi Movement in the production of medicine has been explored.
This was explored during a discussion with the Chairmen of the two-State Pharmaceutical Corporations held at the Presidential Secretariat yesterday.
If such a mechanism could be put in place, these two Funds will have a permanent source of income, President observed.
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Currently there are 750 varieties of medicines in use in the country and sometimes a scarcity could occur due to delays in the procurement process in respect of imports.
Chairman of State Pharmaceuticals Manufacturing Corporation Dr. Uthpala Indrawansha said that his organization produces 80 medicines required by hospitals in the country.
Plans are underway to domestically produce Saline and several other items. This will save the country around Rs. 1300 million annually, Dr. Indrawansha said.
All the medicines should be of the highest standards said the President while warning relevant officials not to give any chance to produce or import substandard medicines.
While stressing the need for maintaining buffer stocks to prevent any scarcity to occur, the President pointed out that orders should be placed by calculating the date of the expiry of medicines.
Secretary to President P. B. Jayasundera, Secretary to the Ministry of Health and Indigenous Medical Services Major General Sanjeewa Munasinghe and representatives of the Treasury were also present during the discussion.