There are doctors and then there there are quacks.
Andhra Pradesh has close of 60,000 quacks which are prescribing medicines and while it is difficult for patients to differentiate between a fake vs genuine doctor, the government is using technology to wage a war on fake doctors/quacks.
The Comprehensive Drug Monitoring System
AP govt is working on CDMS (Comprehensive Drug Monitoring System), a software where each of the 64,000 registered doctors will be integrated into the system.
..a doctor after examining a patient, will on the CDMS app, mention the medicine and a choice of brand names that can be bought. Only such a prescription with a digital signature of the doctor will be honoured by the pharmacies. (source)
The doctor has to mention the medicine choice of brand names that can be bought. Only such a prescription of the digital signature of the doctor will be honoured by the pharmacies.
For patients, they will get an OTP which they can use to buy medicines (or use Aadhaar for verification).
The biggest benefit of this? DATA. Data which can be used to not just build electronic health record, but also create useful plumbing to marry healthcare and digital.
For sure, this is a great initiative and can do wonders if it is launched at the country level.