Transforming India&rsquos Health Care Scenario
December 2009

Transforming India’s Health Care Scenario

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The Medical Technology Conference organised by CII was held on October 7, 2009 in New Delhi. This was the second edition of the conference and focused on the theme “Transforming India’s Healthcare Scenario � Role of Medical Technology.”

The Indian Medical Technology industry has taken impressive strides domestically, witnessing growth in almost all areas of healthcare. Beyond high growth, it has demonstrated an ability to support the Indian healthcare industry through superior technologies and willingness to serve. Global medical technology companies now view India as a significant market as compared to the developed economies due to its large population base.

The Medical technology Conference was CII’s effort of bringing forward the key issues on the medical technology sector in India.

In the inaugural session, the conference kicked off with a welcome note by Chandrajit Banerjee, Director General of CII. Following which, Rohit Mehta, Chairman of CII Medical Equipment Division and General Manager and Head, L&T Medical; Anjan Bose, Conference Chairman and Vice President and Business Head, Philips Healthcare; Dr. Prathap C Reddy, CII National Committee on Healthcare and Chairman, Apollo Hospitals Group; and Ajay Pitre, Vice Chairman, CII Medical Equipment Division and MD Sushrut Surgicals Pvt. Ltd., presented their views on medical technology being a key factor in transforming India’s healthcare scenario and the aim of the conference to

  •  Understand the current and anticipated Indian Medical Technology Industry landscape
  • Understand various demand side hurdles such as affordability, accessibility and awareness
  • Identify novel initiatives taken by industry participants and Government to facilitate growth and greater access to mass markets
  • Provide an understanding of building sustainable collaboration models to realize synergies �
  • Multinationals leveraging on India’s product and cost capabilities while providing Indian medical devices scope for growth and expansion on the global platform
  • Come up with innovative business solutions that can increase the pace of growth in medical technology adoption

Sri Dinesh Trivedi, Minister of State for Health and Family Welfare, Government of India gave the inaugural address highlighting the role of the Government in providing the requisite impetus for the augmentation of the medical technology industry in India.

In addition to the inaugural and valedictory sessions, the conference was divided into four sessions that focused on

  • Indigenous Manufacturing and Technology Solutions for Affordable Healthcare
  • Partnering with Technology to Make Healthcare Accessible
  •  Regulatory: Ways and means to ensure quality healthcare
  • CEOs Panel Discussion on Innovation and its impact on Patient Care

The speakers at the plenary session 1 on indigenous manufacturing and technology solutions for affordable healthcare�Dr. Ajit K Nagpal, Chairman � Executive Council of Batra Hospital and Medical research Centre and  Debasis Panda, Joint Secretary, Minister of Health and Family Welfare, Government of India talked about the non availability or non affordability of healthcare services in India. They talked about how medical technology can play a crucial role in bridging this gap, however it needs to be designed keeping in mind the local needs and also at a relatively lower cost. The major focus of this session was on technology solutions, trying to arrive at a roadmap which can give a boost to indigenous manufacturing. The eminent panellists further discussed the key issues that impede indigenous manufacturing and the most probable solutions that may improve this scenario.

Considering the rapid increase in demand for healthcare services that have forced the government to rethink upon the delivery model, the government is now ready to think out of the box and proactively involving private sector to increase the reach of healthcare services. Anecdotal evidence suggests that partnering with medical technology industry can significantly improve health indicators like IMR,MMR or providing high end diagnostic services. These models have proven to be sustainable and successful. The need of the hour is to take on these projects at a larger scale so that the number of beneficiaries can increase significantly. For successful implementation of these projects a lot of challenges need to be overcome, political will power, risk sharing mechanism to name a few. To aim of the next special plenary session was to find a way to overcome these challenges. In this session on Partnering with Technology to Make Healthcare Accessible, Sam Pitroda, Chairman of National Knowledge Commission, Government of India shared his views and ideas on partnership opportunities amongst government and medical technology industry. The other key speaker of this session was Sangita Reddy, Executive Director of Apollo Hospitals Group.

While the Indian healthcare scenario is characterized by lack of standardization and ambiguity on regulatory standards a lot has been achieved in the pharma segment in terms of optimal regulation and the same needs to be replicated for the medical devices and healthcare delivery sector. Proper regulation can help the industry positively by harmonizing it with the rest of the world, though with local needs in consideration. The second plenary session, hence focussed on regulatory ways and means to ensure quality healthcare. The moderator of this session was Ajay Pitre, who along with a host of eminent panellists touched upon what is the sort of regulatory framework required for medical technology segment, which simultaneously ensure the cost of technology increase significantly due to regulation. The panel discussions also focussed on the role of the government and private sector in regulating this industry. Bringing key examples from the pharma segment, Dr Surinder Singh, Drug Controller General of India, Ministry of Health and Family Welfare delivered a special address on regulation of medical devices in India.

The plenary session III was the CEO’s panel discussion on innovation and its impact on patient care. Several key people from the medical technology industry participated in this session and talked about how innovation has helped companies in achieving the dual objective of better patient care and increase in the market size.

The conference ended with the final valedictory session focussing on changing dynamics of medical technology � addressing expectations of healthcare deliverers. The session focussed on analysing the needs and expectations of healthcare deliverers and how medical technology is shaping up to provide potential solutions for the same.

The presence of several key personnel from the healthcare sector, medical technology industry and the Government made the conference and important knowledge sharing platform for all who attended it and succeeded in resolving issues pertaining to the role of medical technology and transforming the healthcare scenario in India.

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