Medical Technology Industry Should Unite
To Leverage Growth Potential: Experts
The Indian medical devices industry which is growing at the rate of around 50
per cent per annum has immense opportunities to leverage in the near future,
provided the stakeholders and the government meeting the existing challenges in
unison, according to healthcare industry experts.
The industry members and the analysts in healthcare sector has took an account
of the current opportunities and challenges in the medical technology industry
in the MEDI Tech Summit 2009, an international conference organised by the
Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) in Mumbai.
Even as the Rs 45 mn domestic medical devices market is currently growing at
around 50 per cent per annum, most of the technology and high end devices are
imported from foreign nations, informed Anand Rangachary, managing director,
Frost & Sullivan - South Asia and Middle East. The government should support the
domestic industry to strengthen their R&D operations and to bring in high end
quality products through public private partnership (PPP) model, he suggested
while presenting an overview report on the medical technology segment.
"There are different development models we can adopt for the growth, like
service based model and pay per usage model for development of medical
technology. The success of the industry depends on how we manage the business in
the next four to five years," he added.
The healthcare industry will see a better growth in the future, with the growth
of insurance sector, development of information technology and related services
and new developments in pharmaceuticals sector to bring in cost effective,
indigenous technologies for the patient population, said Sangita Reddy,
executive director - operations, Apollo Group of Hospitals.
The industry should focus on partnership models including PPP to bring in newer
technologies and methods. She also highlighted the need of bringing in
innovative information technology services in the medical technology segment for
improving effectiveness of quality.
"At present, the current system of growth is unsustainable and the budget
allocations for healthcare segment are not enough. The industry should improve
the conditions through partnership models and with the growth in insurance
sector, IT and pharma, the healthcare industry will go through considerable
changes in the next 10 to 15 years," said Reddy.
While delivering the special address in the Summit, Dr Laxman Prasad, advisor -
Technology Development, Department of Science and Technology, Government of
India, invited the Indian medical devices industry to utilise the funds of the
department for research and development of new technologies and methods.
The government has increased the support for R&D to the industry manifold in the
past years. While the drugs and pharma budget was Rs 10 crore in 1994-95 (eighth
five year Plan), it has increased to Rs 100 crore in 2008-09 and has also
inculcated additional funds of Rs 40 crore grant-in-aid and Rs 60 crore for
industry loans to support R&D operations.
The funds can also be utilised for medical devices industry to strengthen the
domestic industry with newer technologies and methods, he added. The conference
also discussed various issues and challenges in the medical technology sector.
The conclusions of the discussions would be conveyed to the concerned government
departments for future progress, informed A Vaideesh, chairman - CII MEDI Tech
Summit 2009 and managing director, Johnson & Johnson Medical, India.
(Ref : Chronicle Pharmabiz dated April 11, 2009)
Pharmexcil To Set Up Panels For
Various Export Segments, Plans Outsourcing Expertise
In an effort to further improve the services to ensure service to all the
sectors of the Council, the Pharmaceutical Export Promotion Council (Pharmexcil)
has decided to set up separate panels of experts for various segments related to
The council will set up panels for APIs & intermediates, pharmaceutical
formulations, biotech & biological products, medical devices, surgicals,
diagnostics & healthcare products, veterinary drugs, R&D, Clinical trials &
pharmaceutical services, DGFT, customs and central excise and a panel for drug
regulatory matters addressing both international and domestic systems. The
number of panels can go further as per the requirement of the industry,
according to Dr P V Appaji, executive director, Pharmexcil.
Besides, the council is also exploring options to outsource expertise from the
best resources for the panel and industry. The consultants and private firms can
register their name in the Pharmexcil website, so that its members can contact
them directly for services.
"The panel will help the council to improve its services to the pharma exporters
in the country. We will support the panels and the firms related to the segment
to conduct seminars and workshops by allotting funds, in future," said Dr Appaji.
The plans for outsourcing will help the companies to find right sources to solve
their issues, he added.
The main functions of the panels would be to formulate activities for the growth
of the sector, provide inputs and make suggestions to the council on various
policy issues. The secretariat of the council would provide all necessary
assistance to the panels. Each panel should also schedule their annual schedule
and has to inform the council in advance for better organisation of projects.
The council has invited the members in each segment to join the panels.
Once receiving the response from the interested members, the committee of
administration will consider the situation and the process to set up panels will
take almost two to three months. The members can avail services of experts and
consultants even before official commissioning of panels, he added.
The council already has two expert panels under its administration, one for
Ayush products and another for SMEs, which are actively working. Pharmexcil is
also supporting its members in the patent related issues through its Patent
Facilitation Centre, set up with the support of Department of Pharmaceuticals.
In the backdrop of the recent regulatory issues faced in Africa and Europe, and
various relevant issues on certification and trade relations with foreign
countries, the expansion of operations through setting up panels will help the
council to address the issues effectively within limited timeframe, comments Dr
(Ref : Chronicle Pharmabiz dated April 27, 2009)