Govt's Healthcare & S& T policies forward looking: industry
Industry looks for more
Public health is still evolving in India and is witnessing many hurdles in its attempt towards better healthcare facilities. The Modi government is focusing on healthcare reforms and is moving towards quality free healthcare. This includes E-Health scheme, free healthcare schemes for the unaffording and healthcare services in the inaccessible areas.
The government’s initiative of Make in India, is working in sync with the medical equipment industry and boosting its growth. This has led to an increase in the domestic manufacturing of medical equipment and simulators. The increase in outlay for healthcare sector in the last budget is a step ahead to achieve all of the above. Some of the state governments are also augmenting the above mentioned steps.
The announcement of many scheme including that of “Ayushmaan Bharat Scheme” by the Modi government offers both opportunity and responsibility for the life sciences industry. The industry looks for more support from the government in terms of funding, emphasis on Translational & Applied Science and higher education.
“The Modi government is focusing on healthcare. So changes come in and they should be welcomed. All changes are associated with an inertia to change. There is no question that this brings in problems for the existing healthcare systems. It would be the prime responsibility of the healthcare system to adapt as fast as possible to the changes. At the same time it is the responsibility of the government to push things at an acceptable pace,” says Dr Ashish Rawandale, MD, Tejnaksh Healthcare.
Pavan Choudary, MD, Vygon India says “There is no ambiguity that this government has introduced some much required and innovative schemes for the welfare of the public; however as responsible citizens, we must also alert the government, time and again towards adapting a more nuanced and structured implementation plan for these schemes and urge them to consider the recommendations of all the stakeholders from the healthcare industry.”
“The government should implement the National Medical Device Policy with a sense of urgency” says Vishnu Bhat, Founder & Chairman, Blue Neem Medical Devices and adds “Its implementation will help the local industry blossom with immense benefits to patients. Develop clear long term vision and road map for the medical devices industry, alongside pharmaceutical and health centers to address the health care industry holistically.”
According to Dr Sanjay Sarin, Head of FIND India, the challenges include improving linkages to secondary and tertiary healthcare levels, shortage of skilled healthcare workers at all levels from doctors to paramedical workers, healthcare financing, improve access at primary healthcare levels and improve quality of healthcare delivery.
“What is needed today is to bridge this widening trust gap between the private healthcare providers and others. It is critical that all the stakeholders address the issue of trust deficit as a priority, working in collaboration with each other,” says (Hony.) Brig Dr Arvind Lal, CMD, Dr Lal PathLabs
Sharing his views on the challenges, Debayan Ghosh – President & Founder, Epygen Biotech says “Though selected states take proactive role in the national biotech progress, it is expected that the federal government shall incentivize all the states of the country to join in this journey of the sunrise industry!”
Commenting on the need for infrastructure development Dr Taslimarif Saiyed, CEO & Director, C-CAMP says “There is a need to have a major Life Science Research Park near current innovation hubs like C-CAMP so that some of these small start-ups can grow but still remain in innovation cluster.”
On issues before the industry which need attention from the government, Murli Sundrani, Business Director, BD Life sciences- biosciences says “Our expectation is to increase the pie of R&D funding so that both basic and socio-economic research continues and complement each other.”
In the coming pages we are covering experts’ opinion on different aspects of life sciences industry from innovation to IoT, biologicals to digital technologies, and biotechnology to medical devices.