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MedicalTech Innovation Forum magnifies the importance of innovation and infrastructure in the Indian medical devices industry

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With 192 delegates under its roof, the forum united policy makers, national and international leaders from medical technology industry, academic and research fraternity to discuss major factors that impact the growth of the Indian medical devices industry, such as import dependency, need for more investment and collaborations

The launch edition of MedicalTech Innovation Forum, as Messe Frankfurt India’s first-ever hybrid conference was held at Visakhapatnam in October 2021. Experts from the healthcare industry discussed the need for optimum infrastructure, regulatory framework and innovation in the Indian medical devices industry.

Aligning with India’s goal of becoming a global hub for medical device manufacturing and innovation, Messe Frankfurt India and Andhra Pradesh MedTech Zone (AMTZ) successfully launched the first edition of MedicalTech Innovation Forum (MIF) in October 2021 at Kalam Convention Centre, AMTZ Campus, Visakhapatnam.

With 192 delegates under its roof, the forum united policy makers, national and international leaders from medical technology industry, academic and research fraternity to discuss major factors that impact the growth of the Indian medical devices industry, such as import dependency, need for more investment and collaborations.

The two-day conference was inaugurated by prominent and renowned members from the world of healthcare, including:

  • Dr Jitendra Sharma, Managing Director & Chief Executive Officer, Andhra Pradesh Medtech Zone
  • Dr Uma Nambiar, Managing Director, Zeeden Life Sciences & Chairperson, DHIA
  • Dr Manoj Chugh, Vice President & Head, Research and Development (Reagents), Transasia Bio-Medicals Ltd.
  • Sudhakar Mairpadi, Head – Quality, Regulatory and Govt. Affairs, Philips India Ltd.
  • Dr Anand Krishnan, Chief Executive Officer, Medivalley Incubation Council, Andhra Pradesh Medtech Zone
  • Dilip Kumar, Chief Executive Officer, Biovalley Incubation Council, Andhra Pradesh Medtech Zone
  • Ryou Jung-Suk, Managing Director – India, Cube Medical – Korea and Managing Director, IDTA (International Incurable Disease Treatment Association)

Dr Nambiar shared, “India, as we all know, is the pharmacy of the world. We are also very well known for a good and economical healthcare system, so it’s only natural that the next arena for us to conquer in India would be the industry of medical devices. For various reasons we have not yet reached where we should because the big companies are traditionally centred in the west, but we have been outsourcing the devices to a lot of companies.”

“However, we have seen revolution of sorts in the last two years. Owing to Government’s focus on ‘Aatmanirbhar Bharat’ and making India self-sufficient in many things related to healthcare, we have seen India transform from an importer of consumables in infectious disease treatment to the second largest exporter in the world within a span of one year. The same fate will also ensue in the medical devices industry.” Dr Nambiar further said that improvement of regulatory framework in India and encouragement towards innovation in medical devices from the government’s behalf will be the next best thing that is going to happen in the healthcare industry.

Elaborating on the glowing opportunities that exist in the medical technology space, Dr Srikanth Sola, Founder, CEO and Director, Devic Earth Pvt Ltd, shared, “Within medical devices there are opportunities in diagnostics across adult paediatric ranges particularly in areas such as oncology, radiology, cardiology and other major specialties. There are also opportunities within medical therapeutics, devices, treatments and algorithms that help to predict when a patient is about to fall sick and help them get better. These devices include treatments that can be used in the hospital, within healthcare facilities for outpatient use and at home.”

Abhijeet Ghosh, Assistant Drugs Controller (Medical Devices), Central Drugs Standard Control Organisation (CDSCO), who was a part of the prestigious dais, also shared: “There is a lot of scope in the field of medical devices but it is also crucial to set up proper regulations first.”

“Conferences like these are vital to stimulate interactions between start-ups, manufacturers and regulators which will help the government to understand the needs of industry players. I hope that the organisers will continue to host events as such for the betterment of Indian medical devices industry.”

India’s aim to overcome the excess of imports and become an independent producer of medical devices and medical technology can only be realised by promoting localisation, empowering start-ups and setting-up medtech research and authentication centres to approve and certify standardised medical devices, and eliminate counterfeiting from the supply chain.

Overall, the joint cooperation between Messe Frankfurt India and AMTZ, through the launch of MedicalTech Innovation Forum, went a long way to discuss a clear collaborative approach and to project a roadmap for the medical devices industry in India to follow in the long run.

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