National Medical Device Policy 2023 has a note of enduring prudence: Pavan Choudary, Chairman of MTaI

The Union Cabinet chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi has approved the new Medical Device Police 2023 which is aimed at accelerating the sector the path of growth with a patient centric approach. The new policy is being praised by the experts and the Medical Technology Association of India (MTaI) is hopeful about the new rules.

“Though we still have to go through the fine print, we are encouraged by the spotlight turned on R&D. While India has only 1.5% of the global medical device market, it has 8% share of the MedTech R&D work force already. This is a fertile and proven area to focus on,” said Pavan Choudary, Chairman, MTaI.

The market size of medical devices sector is estimated to be $11 billion (approximately ₹ 90,000 crore) in 2020 and its share in the global medical device market is estimated to be 1.5%, said the government, adding that the sector is on a growth track and has an enormous potential to become self-reliant and to contribute towards the goal of universal health care.

“In addition to this skilling and upskilling of healthcare workers augers well for patient-care and man power exports. Adjacent to this announcement we have also happily noted that government is planning to open 157 nursing colleges. This is another well-chosen space as it is estimated that new technologies like AI which may make the desktop healthcare worker (even many doctors) redundant will not impact the nursing staff so adversely. So this policy has a note of enduring prudence to it,” said Choudary.

The emphasis on creating a systematic brand positioning and awareness creation program is long due and laudable, he further added.

The government has already initiated implementation of PLI Scheme for medical devices and support for setting up of 4 Medical devices Parks in the States of Himachal Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Tamil Nadu and Uttar Pradesh. Under the PLI scheme for Medical Devices, till now, a total of 26 projects have been approved, with a committed investment of Rs.1206 Cr and out of this, so far, an investment of ₹714 crore has been achieved. Under the PLI scheme, total of 14 projects producing 37 products have been commissioned and domestic manufacturing of high-end medical devices has started which include Linear Accelerator, MRI Scan, CT-Scan, Mammogram, C-Arm, MRI Coils, high end X-ray tubes, etc. Remaining 12 products will be commissioned in near future. Five projects out of total 26 projects have been approved recently, under Category B, for domestic manufacturing of 87 products / product components.

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