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Novartis India is planning to double its reach for Arogya Parivar, its rural sales initiative, over the next few years.
Through Arogya Parivar, Novartis India provides healthcare services and medicines in 30,000 villages across India, confirmed the Vice-Chairman and Managing Director, Ranjit Shahani.
In 2008, the pilot project was in three districts and now it covers 202 districts in eleven states.
"Arogya Parivar that started as a novel rural marketing initiative is now a profit-making body. In a span of two years, we have grown in terms of reach and volumes. We are now present in 3,00,000 villages and plan to double the figure in the next few years," Shahani said.
The pharma company is also planning to double the number of cells which are aimed to create awareness among the village consumers on diseases and its prevention and treatments, also refer patients to doctors and update physicians on the programme and to make products available in the pharmacies.
Commenting on investments, Shahani said, initiatives as these, need high upfront investments, before expecting a break- even.