The Pharmacy Act, 1948

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Chapter: Forensic Pharmacy : The Pharmacy Act, 1948

The recommendations of Drugs Enquiry Committee and Health Survey and Development Committee, laid the foundation for the enactment of the Pharmacy Act, 1948.


The Pharmacy Act, 1948

The recommendations of Drugs Enquiry Committee and Health Survey and Development Committee, laid the foundation for the enactment of the Pharmacy Act, 1948. The necessity was felt to monitor the profession of pharmacy in the country in order to ensure that the medicines are handled, dispensed/compounded or sold only by the qualified persons namely, the registered pharmacists.

In the absence of any uniform regular course for the training of pharmacist in the country in the Pre-independent era, the necessity was also felt to introduce a professional course of instruction for minimum qualification of registration as pharmacist, in order to create requisite qualified manpower to manage the affairs of profession of pharmacy in the country.

The drugs are life-saving and also potent which require proper handling at the counters in retail-outlets and hospitals. Their mishandling by non-qualified persons shall play havoc with national health care system. It is to overcome this obstacle the Pharmacy Bill was introduced in 1945.

On 4th march, 1948, the Statutory control on the pharmacy education in the country was established with the enactment of the Pharmacy Act, 1948 with the following preamble.

"An Act to regulate the profession of pharmacy". Whereas it is expedient to make t>etter provision for the regulation of the profession and practice of pharmacy and for that purpose to constitute Pharmacy Councils;

It extends to whole ofIndia except, State of Jammu and Kashmir.

The Pharmacy Act enacted by Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Government of India is covered under 5 Chapters which encompass 46 sections. The major amendment to the Act was made in 1976 to Section 42 of the Act wherein after cutoff date of 151 November, 1983, the drug stores in the country would be run under the supervision of registered pharmacists.

The Chapters covered under the Pharmacy Act are as follows:

Chapter I Introductory

Chapter II Pharmacy Council of India (PCI)

Chapter III State Pharmacy Council (SPC)

Chapter IV Registration of Pharmacists

Chapter V Miscellaneous

The Chapters I and II came into force immediately on enactment of the Act. Chapters III, IV and V were to be implemented within the timeframe given by the Central Government to the State Government by pUblication into the Official Gazette or the respective Union Territory. First Pharmacy Council ofIndia was constituted in 1949. First Education Regulations (E.R) were to be framed by 1952 and effectively implemented within 3 years of their framing.

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