AimeD urges Prime Minister to create separate department for medical devices
AiMeD on behalf of the Indian medical device industry writes to PM Modi to change the name of the Department of Pharmaceuticals to Department of Pharmaceuticals and Medical Devices or to a separate Department of Medical Devices
The Association of Indian Medical Device Industry (AiMeD) on behalf of the Indian Medical Device Industry has written to PM Modi asking for a Department of Medical Devices and a Department of Life Science/Health Products.
Highlighting the urgent need for a separate department for medical devices, AimeD’s letter asked the Prime Minister to change the name of the Department of Pharmaceuticals (DoP) to Department of Pharmaceuticals and Medical Devices or to have a Separate medical device department so that the manufacturers will be assured that the government takes this sector seriously as medical devices are not pharmaceuticals although both can be medical products. The current name reflects the focus on the mature pharmaceuticals sector and the neglected medical device sector, which is 80% dependent on imports.
Speaking on why this change is needed, Rajiv Nath, Forum Coordinator, AiMeD, said, “India still remains 80% dependent on imports of medical devices. The Department of Pharmaceuticals and the Ministry of Chemicals and Fertilizers have so far had limited success in carrying out their mandate to stimulate the manufacture of medical devices and address addiction to import 70-80% and have limited expertise in this industry as the high precision device industry has very little synergy with the chemical and fertilizer industry.
Imports of medical devices grew by a record 41% to Rs 63,200 crore in 2021-22 and an estimated market of Rs 160,000 crore at retail and institutional level, but with huge opportunity for investment of over Rs 80,000 crore.
“The current team must be supported by the required expertise of at least 4 people, i.e. someone from medical, biomedical engineering, product development and marketing backgrounds with DST/ DBT / BIRAC / DHR / MOH&FW / BCIL / NHSRC / EEPC / IBEF may be considered,” the letter reads.
The future vision of a separate department for medical devices is to make India one of the top 5 manufacturing hubs for medical devices in the world and to be a nodal interface of the manufacturing industry with all central government departments to catalyze the growth of India’s medical device industry. , Made in India and made for India.
The separate department would define the priority mechanisms to combat the priority diseases. Implement a strategy to reduce India’s import dependency from over 70-80% to less than 30% over the next 5 years for priority devices and the next 10 years for all devices.
It also aims to create a forum for close collaboration between users, developers, manufacturers and universities with DST, DBT, BIRAC, CSIR, DSIR, Kalam Institute, etc.
The aim is also to establish and manage a special purpose vehicle fund for the government to jointly own the patent/intellectual property shareholding and inject $75 million or Rs 500 crore in equity for R&D projects long gestation under Made by India & Make for India projects for companies with NIL foreign participation.
The revamped department will facilitate the creation and development of clusters for medical devices, the creation of laboratories and service centers under PPP and the development of personnel skills in the field of manufacturing, sales, service and regulation .
The letter suggested that this department could be placed within the Ministry of Health as an extension of a Ministry of Health Products or a Ministry of Life Sciences.