Understanding generic medicine

Generic-DrugsA gentleman I met recently thought that generic drugs were the same as spurious drugs. I was shocked and explained what generic drugs meant. Thought I should put down the explanation here for the benefit of others who may be thinking along similar lines.

A pharmaceutical company makes a medicine after years of research. It then files for a patent and sells the medicine under a brand name. During the period that the patent is valid, no other company can manufacture the same product. Obviously during this time, the cost of the medicine will be high as the company has to recoup all its expenses.

However, the patents issued are valid only for 20 years or so. After the expiry of patent, any other pharmaceutical company can take up the manufacture of the same medicine and sell it under a different name. This product is now called a generic equivalent of the original medicine.

In essence, Generic drugs are copies of brand-name drugs that have exactly the same dosage, intended use, effects, side effects, route of administration, risks, safety, and strength as the original drug. In other words, their pharmacological effects are exactly the same as those of their brand-name counterparts.

Generic drugs can be and usually are very much cheaper than their brand-name counterparts because the generic drug manufacturer has not put in any money on R&D, clinical trials, FDA approval, etc. which usually form the bulk of the cost. Their only costs include the cost of the ingredients that go into the medicine and the manufacturing and packaging costs, which are usually only a small fraction of the overall costs.

Spurious medicines, on the other hand, are fake products manufactured by illegal companies which look like the regular products but contain none of the original ingredients.

I hope now you are clear about the actual meaning of generic medicine.

Now why aren’t the generic drugs much cheaper than they are? Well, they should be, but market forces prevent them from being sold at that rate.

Another question you may have is why Doctors don’t prescribe generic drugs to you. Well, the pharmaceutical companies that hold the patents incentivize the Doctors to prescribe their drugs and hence the Doctors do so. On your part, you can always go to the pharmacy and ask for a generic equivalent and take that with full confidence.

Do you know generic drugs can be up to 80% cheaper than their brand-named counterparts!?
When more and more people become knowledgeable about generics, hopefully the market will wake up and start making generics more affordable. Just imagine, your medical bills could quite easily be halved!

 

‘Jashn’ – India’s largest senior citizen sports, cultural festival

India’s Largest Senior Citizen Sports and Cultural festival – JASHN 2016, will kick off on Saturday 15th – October in Lavasa with an underline theme of “High on Life”.

Ashiana-Jashn-2015-Inter-Senior-Citizen-Games-7The two day event will witness participation of seniors from Ashiana’s five senior living communities namely Utsav Bhiwadi, Nirmay Bhiwadi, Utsav Jaipur, Shubham Chennai and Utsav Lavasa.

One of its kind events in India, Jashn will act as a dais for a whooping over 600 senior citizens’ aged 55-85 participating this year.

The sports competitions, cultural and creative activities will take place at the activity centre of Utsav Lavasa. The sports competition will include Table Tennis, Badminton, Carom, chess and walking competition.

And the cultural competitions will include singing, dancing and much more. Besides creative competitions such as Salad making and Rangoli making will also be there. To keep up with the fun momentum, a glittering ramp show will also be organized where senior citizen will walk the ramp. The panel of judges would comprise of teachers/principals from nearby schools. The event will close on Sunday, October 16 with an awards ceremony.

“The zeal and enthusiasm witnessed in last two Jashn 2014 was one of its kinds and in Jashn 2015 it got even better. It’s so much fun to watch senior citizens performing; participating having fun and creating so much energy that it could put many college fests to shame. It’s the energy and participation of the senior’s which as a group keeps us motivated and organizes it every year.” says Ankur Gupta, Managing Director, Ashiana Housing Ltd.

“For those where everything is black and white, adrenaline rush at any age is exciting! Now is the time to do the things you love. I am very excited and looking forward for the two day event as I am certain the third edition like the last two will take excitement fervor to the hilt,” said Amita Shaw, Resident, Ashiana Utsav Bhiwadi and one of the participants.

Elders week: Chennai Metro falls flat on Accessibility

Metro-gettingdown_3031140gThe first week of October is marked as Elders week and a lot of programs are conducted around the country to highlight the fact that there is an elderly segment of population still living in India.

Pensioners Associations, senior citizens bureaus, Probus clubs, and several private organizations working in the senior citizens sector have been announcing various cultural and informative programs for the said elders.

While these organizations and their programs do bring elders and their issues to the fore, however transiently, whether any permanent improvements are happening is yet to be determined.

One telling article in Hindu illustrates the general apathy of Indians and the Indian Government when it comes to elders and accessibility issues.  This article documents the study conducted by the Disability Rights Alliance on the Airport Metro rail station in Chennai, a building that has just been completed.  Here are some of the results:

1. Entry issues

For Smitha Sadasivan, getting into the station itself was a challenge as the ramp was not level with the ground. Also, the ramp from the parking lot was steep and had no handrails, activists said.

2. Gaps in staircases

Gopi Krishnan and M. Veerappan, who have low vision, noted that there were gaps between the stairs, where their canes slipped in. “It makes us nervous when climbing up,” said Mr. Krishnan.

3. Incomplete signage

Signage was unclear and in many places, incomplete, the tactile paths were patchy and in the bathroom for the disabled, the flush behind the toilet could not be easily reached. Also, there was a difference in the level of the flooring at the entrance, making it hard to get in and out, said B. Meenakshi, an activist.

4. Levels of difference

On the platform, the tactile path did not extend towards the train, and wheelchair users had difficulty getting in due to the difference in the levels of the train and the platform. The warning strip on the platform near the train was inadequate for visually impaired persons using canes, the members said.

5. Lost in the lift

At Nanganallur, the team had problems due to lack of signage, inaccessible drinking water facilities and nobody answering the help button at the lift, said Sudha Ramamoorthy, a DRA member, “Also, there was no announcement of the doors opening and closing in the lift and the music is quite loud, making it difficult to hear anything when the help button is pressed,” she said.

6. A mixed bag

There was some progress though, said Vaishnavi Jayakumar, a DRA member. “The floor is not as slippery as it was at Alandur, making it easier for those on crutches, and it is of a different colour. The ticket counters are lower and more easily reachable and the ticket vending machines are also somewhat accessible. However, persons with visual impairment cannot use them,” she said.

To read the full article, go here.

 

Elders week – Accessibility still out of reach

polling-stationIndia’s first accessibility audit failed to find a single public building or place that was completely accessible to people with disability!

That the first accessibility audit has been conducted decades after Independence is in itself a telling fact.  However, even this would not have happened except for PM Narendra Modi’s push for an accessible India.

The first phase of audit, launched across 31 cities as part of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s pet initiative Accessible India, threw up shocking results, revealing appalling state of toilets and other facilities for persons with disabilities in public buildings, hospitals, railway stations and educational institutions, and half-hearted attempts at building ramps in the name of accessibility.

The department of empowerment of persons with disabilities (Divyangjan) had entrusted the task of auditing public buildings across 31 cities to 11 empanelled auditors.

You can read more about it here.

Employment Opportunities for seniors

 

A new company and website had come up focusing on job opportunities for the retired.  Aptly named NotRetired.in,  it aims to connect persons retired from formal employment with prospective employers to address the problem of finding a job/ activity.

 

Services Offered by NotRetired.in

1. Employers can search for candidates and directly contact them. They can also post their job requirements and view applicant’s information
2. Job seekers can search and apply for active jobs by simple registration process
3. Users can read articles on various topics related to them

 

Key benefits NotRetired.in offers to Job Seekers?

• Multiple job opportunities as we have tied up with big and small organizations who are looking for experienced resources from different sectors
• We are also scouting through various websites/platforms for relevant job opportunities to present everything at one place. This will reduce the burden of job seekers to search at multiple places
• Unlike other job portals, we are focused on the retired community. Thus, job opportunities on our portal are clear and rightly targeted, making a hassle free search for you
• In order to help our Users who face difficulty in using technology, NotRetired.in has a dedicated team of professionals to facilitate them In signing up and finding jobs.

 

Key benefits NotRetired.in offers to Employers?

• NotRetired.in provides a variant database of the candidates starting from the age of 37 to 70 years with varied skillset from a wide range of sectors like Defense, Government, Banking, and Teaching etc.
• Since our portal only caters to the retired community, the database is more focused and highly sorted, if knowledge and experience at an affordable price is your requirement

Address:
#304, NotRetired Online LLP, V.V.Vintage Boulevard, Somajiguda, Hyderabad-82.
Email: jobs@notretired.in
Phone: 9000 766 066

website:  www.notretired.in

Never too old to play

As you may know the week of Aug 22nd to August 28th is Madras Week.
As part of the celebrations, a lot of activities will take place around Chennai during the week.

madrasWeek

Old is Gold Store, along with Kreeda Games is arranging an event called “Never too old to play”, an evening of traditional Indian games such as pallanguzhi andAadu puli aatam with the aim to help senior citizens in our beautiful city to relive their childhood.
Kindly convey this to your members and friends so they can register for the event at a location convenient to them.  Entry is free.
Schedule:
 Semmenchery OMR:
Date : Aug 22nd Monday.
Time: 3PM – 7 PM.
Venue: Old is Gold Store, Opposite Kohinoor Asiana, Semmenchery OMR, chennai.
Indira Nagar, Adyar
Date : Aug 24th Wednesday.
Time: 3PM – 7 PM.
Venue: Old is Gold Store, No. 53, 1st Main Road, Indira Nagar, Adyar, Chennai 20.
Anna Nagar
Date : Aug 26th Friday.
Time: 3PM – 7 PM.
Venue: Old is Gold Store, AH-247, 1st Street, Anna Nagar, Chennai 600040.
To register please call 96770 03424.

Small savings interest rates: Seniors Spared

small-savings-mof-post-office-ppf-nsc-kvp-banks-recurring-deposit-scheme-senior-citizensThe Narendra Modi government has apparently decided to play safe and not risk a politically sensitive decision by reducing interest rates on small savings.

On Monday, the government left the rates unchanged for the July to September 2016 quarter from what they were for the previous quarter. This marks a stark contrast to March quarter when the government slashed the rates on all small savings schemes, such as public provident fund, Kisan Vikas Patra and time deposits of various maturities.

“Given the furore over the rate cut in March, the government may not want to alienate the middle class before the assembly elections in 2017,” the Economic Times had quoted a mutual fund manager as saying.

You can read the entire story here.

HeWee Go: the device that could stop you from visiting the toilet ever again

needingtopee

For elders with bladder weakness, a simpler, cleaner, easier-to-use urine system is on the way.

Here are some of the details

A jockstrap-cum-colostomy-bag, the HeWee allows you to urinate on the go and is formed of an adjustable support belt, rubber sheath and leg-mounted collection bag. Unsurprisingly, it looks just as ridiculous as it sounds.

Which is where the HeWee Go Active comes in.