Medical Technology has evolved in India over the last 5 years - Health - Medicine

Healthcare in India features a universal health care system run by the constituent states and territories of India. The Constitution charges every state with "rising of the level of nutrition and the standard of living of its people and the improvement of public health as among its primary duties". The National Health Policy was endorsed by the Parliament of India in 1983 and updated in 2002.

Indian healthcare market was been on a constant high since half a decade, ten folding the double digits growth rates in recent years. The major growth has been epicentered in the metro cities of India. India's healthcare system is paradoxical - on one hand, it boasts of 'best in class' healthcare delivery attracting medical tourists from across the world, and on the other, it is characterized by a near absence of accessible, affordable quality health services for a large part of its population. The healthcare facilities, especially in the rural India are not sufficient. This scenario is soon about to change.

India is a developing country, but India and China are slated to be the future leaders of innovation in medical technology. According to a report released by industry body Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI) and consultancy PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC), it is these emerging economies that will have a higher spending on research and development which in turn will provide the trigger for innovation. The answer lies in innovation! Medical technology innovation can be the tool to make modern care accessible, available and affordable to all by lowering the cost of the product or delivery. Innovation need not only be restricted to products. Business model innovation across the value chain (manufacturing, distribution, marketing etc.) and frugality can often generate significant benefits to all stakeholders, including patients.

Now for innovation to make an impact, collaboration between the stakeholders in the Medical technology ecosystem would play a key success factor. The industry must move from 'company-centric' innovation, towards 'co-creation'. All stakeholders - government, industry, academia, healthcare and insurance providers - need to co-ordinate/ strategize and move in step for their actions to resonate and bringing about a lasting change. Apart from this, there is also what can perhaps be the biggest opportunity for improvement - an ambiguous regulatory framework with no distinct legal status for the Medical technology industry, which has been acknowledged as a key constraint for the industry.

The Indian healthcare industry is seen to be growing at a rapid pace and is expected to become a US$280 billion industry by 2020. Rising income levels and a growing elderly population are all factors that are driving this growth. In addition, changing demographics, disease profiles and the shift from chronic to lifestyle diseases in the country has led to increased spending on healthcare delivery. In order to meet manpower shortages and reach world standards India would require investments of up to $20 billion over the next 5 years towards the projected growth.

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