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MedSpark in Kerala

  • 23 Sep 2020
  • 4 min read

Why in News

Kerala is set to lay the foundation stone for MedSpark, one of the first medical device parks in the country, in Thiruvananthapuram.

  • Medical devices include surgical equipment, diagnostic equipment like Cardiac Imaging, CT scans, X-ray, Molecular Imaging, MRI and Ultrasound-imaging, life support equipment like ventilator, etc. as well as implants and disposables.
  • Medical devices, unlike pharmaceuticals, are dependent on a mix of technologies such as engineering, electronics, material sciences and information technology (IT).

Key Points

  • Established By:
    • Technical Research Centre for Biomedical Devices Programme of the Department of Science and Technology (DST), Government of India.
    • Sree Chitra Tirunal Institute for Medical Sciences and Technology (SCTIMST), an autonomous institute of the DST.
      • SCTIMST has made substantial contributions to the biomedical devices sector and is fully aligned with the vision of Aatmanirbhar Bharat.
    • Kerala State Industrial Development Corporation Ltd. (KSIDC) which is the industrial and investment promotion agency of the Government of Kerala.
  • Fundings:
    • Funding from the state and central governments will meet the capital expenditure and deficit in income against expenses during the initial stages.
    • The business model for the MedSpark is self-sustaining in which its operational expenses will be generated from its revenue streams.
  • Functions: It will focus on the high-risk medical device sector:
    • It will provide a full range of services for the industry like research and development support, testing, and evaluation of medical devices.
    • Create an enabling support system for manufacturing support, technology innovation, and knowledge dissemination.
    • High-risk medical device sector deals with the category of high-risk devices which include medical implants and extracorporeal devices (mechanical organs used in blood purification).
      • For example, implantable cardioverter-defibrillator (a small battery-powered device placed in the chest to monitor heart rhythm and detect irregular heartbeats) pacemakers, coronary stents, artificial heart valves, etc.
  • Benefits:
    • These services can be utilised by the medical device industries located within the MedSpark as well from other parts of India.
    • It will benefit small and medium-sized medical devices industries, which dominate the medical devices sector.
    • It can leverage the existing advantage of Kerala in the high-risk medical device manufacture and develop it into the most sought after destination for setting up the medical device industry in India.
    • It is expected that it would provide direct employment to 1200 people and generate up to 4000-5000 jobs through the supporting industries.

Medical Devices Sector in India

  • The medical devices industry in India is valued at USD 5.2 billion, contributing about 4-5% to the USD 96.7 billion Indian healthcare industry.
  • Medical devices sector in India is very small in size as compared to the rest of the manufacturing industry, though India is one of the top twenty markets for medical devices in the world and is the 4th largest market in Asia after Japan, China, and South Korea.
  • India’s medical devices industry is poised for significant growth in the next five years and the market size is expected to reach USD 50 bn by 2025.
  • India currently imports 80-90% of medical devices and the vast majority of which are unregulated for quality and safety.
    • The USA, Germany, China, Japan, and Singapore constitute the five largest exporters of high technology medical equipment to India.

Source: PIB

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