The government has approved a ₹480 crore scheme to develop a talent pool that will drive the medical devices industry.
The three-year scheme will provide financial assistance to government institutions for running multiple courses on medical devices, upgrading such institutions to global standards.
The move follows the recent announcement of the National Medical Device Policy, 2023, that will help the medical devices sector grow from the present $11 billion to $50 billion by 2030.
“There is a need to have a steady supply of skilled workforce across the medical device sector. For skilling, reskilling and upskilling of professionals in the medical sector, the department may leverage the available resources in ministry of skill development and entrepreneurship,” said an official from the department of pharmaceuticals.
Beside this, the new scheme will support dedicated multidisciplinary courses for medical devices in existing institutions to ensure availability of skilled manpower for futuristic medical technologies, high-end manufacturing and research.
These in turn will produce future-ready medtech human resources and meet the evolving needs of the sector.
“The plan is also to leverage partnerships with foreign academia or industry organizations to develop medical technologies so that India can compete with the world market,” said the official.
Queries sent to the department of pharmaceuticals spokesperson did not elicit a response.
India is 80% dependent on imported medical devices.
Industry experts say that the covid-19 pandemic brought the government focus on medical devices when international supply chains became disrupted.
This prompted India to take urgent steps to manufacture masks, PPE kits, gloves, sanitizers, thermometers, oximeters and oxygen therapy equipment like invasive and non-invasive ventilators, which were imported.
“India is 75-80% import dependent with last two years imports being over ₹60,000 crore and this year the government announced the Medical Devices Policy in which a key strategy indicator was Human Resources Development. We are glad that the policy is being backed by financial outlay to enable government institutions to make tailor-made courses to develop expertise in diverse technologies deployed in medical devices–electronics, metallurgy, electrical, polymer, rubber, chemical and biomedical engineering along with nanotechnology with regulatory and quality management systems,” said Rajiv Nath, Forum Coordinator, Association of Indian Medical Device Industry (AIMED). LiveMint