Jammu: In order to boost health sector in the state, J&K Cabinet chaired by Chief Minister Omar Abdullah on Friday cleared a new drug policy based on rationalisation of the use of drugs.

The new drug policy was approved by the state Cabinet which met here on Thursday under the Chairmanship of Chief Minister Omar Abdullah.

"J-K will now have a new drug policy based on the rationalisation of the use of drugs. It was given a nod by state cabinet on Thursday," state Minister for Health Sham Lal Sharma said.

Revealing the salient features of the policy, the Health Minister said that the Drug Policy would help to ensure balanced growth of health sector in the State. It would also rationalise the use of drugs, he said.

He said that the features of drug policy include selection of essential drug list by expert committee to be known as State Drug Committee. The Committee will comprise clinicians, Micro-biologists, qualified Pharmacists and independent experts besides senior functionaries of the departments, he added.

Sharma said for Indian System of Medicines (ISM) there will be a separate committee. "The policy has been formulated with an aim to upgrade the health care status of Jammu and Kashmir".

The policy also envisages strengthening of Drug and Food Control Organization and Drug Testing Laboratories, he said adding that it also provides for promoting rational use of drugs in the State so that patients receive the medicines appropriately.

It also provides for drugs and therapeutic committees in all the hospitals, he said adding that the concept of essential drugs, rational drug use and generic prescribing shall be integral part of basic and in-service training of health professionals under the policy.