- There are currently 40,000 registered pharmacies throughout the national territory, of which 18,000 have an adjacent medical office.
- Pharmacy medical offices are estimated to offer 10 million consultations per month.
- Instead of seeking to eliminate this type of place, a deputy proposed new regulations.
The recent statement by the Undersecretary of Health, Hugo López-Gatell against the pharmacy medical offices It has generated all kinds of reactions. He directly stated that these are places that should not exist because they put the patients and the doctors themselves at risk. In addition, he pointed out that if he were in his duties, he would have already closed all these spaces.
Since then, two sides have been generated, both those who support his words and those who are against. In Saludiario we publish a note with the opinion of several health professionals on this topic.
The reality is that the impact of the words now could have consequences to modify the regulation about this type of spaces. According to the deputy of the National Action Party (PAN), Hannibal Canez Moraleswhat is needed is not to close the pharmacy medical offices but to maintain a stricter sanitary control.
Proposed New Requirements
With this in mind, he presented to the Mexico City Congress a proposal to achieve safer spaces. At first he said that the Administrative Verification Institute (INVEA) must carry out random inspections of these types of places. These types of visits should be made frequently to identify that they comply with everything established. They must also verify that the doctors who treat patients are qualified.
The proposal also includes a new requirement. In addition to all the filters in the Federal Commission for the Protection against Sanitary Risks (Cofepris) proposed that the doctors in charge should have at least 10 years of experience in a health institution.
Although perhaps the most controversial point of his proposal is that all doctors in pharmacy offices must have a specialty.
In that sense, he stressed that respect should be given to the personnel who work in these places. He also disapproved of López-Gatell’s recent attacks and stressed that these places of economic cost fulfilled a fundamental function during the pandemic.
“Faced with the devastated health system and the swineherd that turned out to be INSABI, private clinics fulfill a social function. The federal government cannot and should not attempt in this way against the constitutional right to exercise a lawful and regulated profession, such as the one undertaken in this type of business.”
What is the importance of pharmacy medical offices?
This business model arrived in our country just over two decades ago and since then it has been widely successful. The largest sample can be seen in the expansion it has achieved and which seems to have no end.
There are more and more spaces and even the large self-service chains like Walmart and Soriana already have their own offices. According to the National Association of Pharmacies of Mexico (Anafarmex), offices adjacent to pharmacies provide 10 million consultations per month.
For its part, there are currently 40,000 pharmacies registered throughout the national territory, of which there are 18,000 with an adjacent medical office. Therefore, disappearing these spaces would mean leaving a large number of Mexicans without the possibility of medical care.
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López-Gatell attacks pharmacy offices: “They should not exist”