| |FEBRUARY 20238The Indian pharmaceutical industry was ripe for disruption, & the exigencies built by the COVID-19 pandemic provided the e-pharmacy format the highly required push. E-pharmacies can now be seen slowly moving into the role conventionally played by the local chemists by rendering over the counter medicines for general kind of ailments, chat bots for instantaneous 1st aid, review of local doctors and assistance in finding doctors, also the suggestions for labs for taking tests, and many others. Furthermore, they are also slowly eroding the box at present that are enjoyed by local doctors, by rendering services that include consultations & diagnostics, and others such as referrals to other specialist doctors, health advice & tips, alternative medicines like ayurveda, suggestions for health check-ups and many others. They are also reaching far beyond the services that are typically associated with chemists by rendering services which include booking of appointments, reminders about pills, check-ups, quick delivery of online reports and several others. With growing customer patronage, e-Pharmacies like Tata 1 mg, Medlife, Netmeds and many others, today are aggressively aiming for a large share of the country's $42 billion pharmaceuticals market. At present, while there are close to fifty e-pharmacies in the country, the market is anticipated to register a CAGR of forty four percent in order reach $4.5 billion by 2025. The business & distribution model of these e-Commerce companies render a sharp contrast to that of the current chemist network.THE ROLE OF PHARMACEUTICAL DISTRIBUTORS IN THE INDIAN PHARMACEUTICAL SECTORTHE PANORAMA
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