With an eye toward reducing India’s dependence on imported medical devices, the country’s Association of Medical Device Industry is touting separate initiatives intended to boost Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s ‘Make in India’ program.
Specifically, Shri Chandrababu Naidu, the chief minister of Andhra Pradesh, met with representatives of the association to discuss how to bolster the industry in India. As a result of the discussions, Naidu has decided to invest in a 200-acre medical device park — the first of its kind in that country.
The park will have a common manufacturing facility center to act as a hub for the small- and medium-sized enterprises sector, says Rajiv Nath, forum coordinator of AIMED.
Efforts will focus on creating an ecosystem for high-end medical device manufacturing and import substitution with an eye for the export market, says Jitendar Sharma, head of the health technology division of the National Health Systems Resource Centre at the Ministry of Health & Family Welfare.
Nath says Naidu also promised to address industry’s concerns at the state and national level to make India a manufacturing hub for medical devices and follow in the footsteps of the pharmaceutical sector. Currently, India imports roughly 70 percent of its medical devices. The “Make in India” program is aiming to boost domestic manufacturing in a number of sectors, including medical devices.
In addition, AIMED has announced the UdaiMed forum in collaboration with the Sree Chitra Tirunal Institute of Medical Sciences and Technology.
According to the association, the initiative is needed because R&D institutions and engineering colleges do product development in isolation and industry has little or no idea of work being done. Often the research has no relevance for industry, says Nath.
Provided that the goals and objectives of the joint initiative are fulfilled, it is sure to be a shot in the arm for the Indian medical devices industry’s pursuit of innovation and growth as a global R&D hub, says Vijay Venkatraman, managing director and CEO at consulting firm Oviya MedSafe.
“Bridging the disciplines of medicine, engineering, information technology and biotechnology is a very significant step in this direction, and UdaiMed could be one of the best engines to make that happen,” Venkatraman tells IDDM. — Jonathon Shacat