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Indian medical device industry at an inflection point, NMDP to trigger growth: Anish Bafna

Nandita Vijayasimha, Bengaluru
Saturday, December 23, 2023, 08:00 Hrs  [IST]

The Indian medical device industry is at a crucial inflection point and the current policy would trigger the next phase of its growth, shaping the future of healthcare. Advancement in medical devices, equipment, diagnostics and technology will play a major role in improving patient outcomes and driving innovation in the sector, said Anish Bafna, CEO & MD, Healthium Medtech.
The year 2023 has been a momentous one for the Indian medtech industry, with the release of the National Medical Device Policy (NMDP) in April. This Policy will play a huge role in shaping the medtech industry, with a focus on promoting patient-centric healthcare delivery and fostering innovation, he added.
Conducive policies will spur local manufacturing and allow new medical devices to reach healthcare providers faster and benefiting patients. The industry outlook for the medtech sector has been positive this year. The market will continue to grow at a robust rate, driven by factors such as an aging population, increasing prevalence and burden of chronic diseases, and demand for more personalized therapies.
The integration of smart connected care, new advances in diagnosis and therapy into new settings and the improvement of clinical outcomes will continue to shape the market for devices and diagnostics.  Smart medical devices, digital therapeutics, AI based solutions, predictive data analytics and wearable technology will continue to be an area of growth. These devices can collect and analyze data in real-time, allowing for more precise monitoring of a patient's health and potential early detection of diseases, he said.
The 3D printing of medical devices has also gained momentum in 2023 as it allows customization and rapid production of medical devices, reducing costs and increasing accessibility for patients. The rise of value-based care, increased insurance penetration and outcome-based payment models is also expected to impact this industry. It places greater emphasis on patient outcomes rather than the volume of services provided, encouraging the development of effective and efficient medical devices, Bafna told Pharmabiz.
For 2024, the industry will continue to call out the need for furthering the policy environment to increase exports and their scalability. Subsequently, the medtech sector will expect an increase in the export incentives under the newly introduced Remission of Duties and Taxes on Export Products Scheme (RoDTEP), rationalise the existing Custom Duties, roll back the Health Cess on medtech imports and significantly amend the SEZ (special economic zones) Act to allow medtech manufacturers to sell their products in the domestic market. Relooking at the tax and tariff structures on imports would go a long way to provide some leeway for the industry to flourish and consequently boost the domestic R&D, he said.
As we progress towards becoming a global medtech hub, there is need for stronger alliances, smarter use of technology and a lucid framework for the policy ecosystem. From establishing more medical device parks and SEZs, partnering with the industry and academia to address skill gaps amongst surgeons and focusing on the mental health of the healthcare fraternity, India could become a medical device powerhouse. The opportunity is ripe for India to emerge as the hub but how successfully we seize it will define our industry status, said the Healthium chief.


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