December 16, 2008

Govt plans new legislation on medical devices

The government is working on a legislation to regulate the quality of medical equipment being marketed in the country, Kapil Sibal, Minister for Science & Technology and Earth Sciences said. Speaking at the inaugural session of the fifth India Health Summit on the theme “Optimizing Healthcare Delivery in India: A Patient Centric Approach”, Sibal said the new regulation will help standardization of the quality of medical devices manufactured in India.

“Most of the medical equipments in India are imported and the medical devices industry in India has not grown much. The government of India is working on Medical Devices legislation, in order to standardize the quality of Indian manufactured medical devices,” he said.

Sibal identified four key areas—R&D in the field of technology and genomics focussed on target drugging, vaccinations & innovative solutions, manufacturing & managing medical devices domestically, delivery of quality human resource and affordability—as the major challenges before healthcare sector.

Speaking on the occasion, Prathap C Reddy, Chairman, CII National Committee on healthcare & Chairman - Apollo Hospitals Group, said: "The task before us is how do we rapidly fill the huge deficit for quality healthcare, which is inaccessible to many. We should look at innovative healthcare models, work on standard definition and working environment for PPP. Skills availability in healthcare sector is not upto the mark; the government should now look at healthcare's requirement to quickly multiply the number of healthcare professionals in India."

Highlighting on the aspects of corporate social responsibility, Pervez Ahmed, Chairman, 5th Indian Health Summit & Executive Medical Director, Max Hospitals Group said solutions to healthcare should follow a proximity approach which is customized to the local community. Integrating research and technology aligning healthcare delivery should be given immense importance, he added.

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