“The Health Ministry is committed to technology integration in the health sector. Digital technology can help to reduce health care costs overall, but we need to ensure our investment in new technologies is done cost effectively and frugally.” This was stated by Smt. Anupriya Patel, Minister of State for Health and Family Welfare at the inaugural of 10th Medical Technology Conference, Medical Technology Shaping Universal Healthcare, organised by Confederation of Indian Industry (CII), here today.
Speaking at the function, Smt Anupriya Patel stated that the scope of digital technology in the public health sector has gone beyond service delivery. She further stated that the Health Ministry is already at the forefront of incorporating the benefits of digital technology towards achieving the goals elucidated in National Health Policy (2017) which are synchronous with the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The National Health Mission (NHM) is already using throughout the country a web-based Health Management Information System(HMIS) to collect and collate data related to the health infrastructure.
Smt Anupriya Patel further informed that dispensing health insurance, registration of vital health statistics like births and deaths, monitoring of Mobile Medical Units (MMUs) through Geographical Positioning Systems(GPS) and preventing female foeticide through implementation of The Pre-Conception and Pre-Natal Diagnostic Techniques (Prohibition Of Sex Selection) Act 2003 Act are some of the additional tenets that are being brought online for ease of implementation, progressively decreasing costs and most importantly, increased accountability and transparency.
The Minister further stated that the government is committed to making India a manufacturing hub for medical devices as our medical technology industry is increasing manifolds and is expected to grow from 4.5 Billion US Dollars currently to 14 Billion US Dollars in 2022. “My Government has notified the Medical Devices Rules, 2017 and we are in the process of finalizing the Draft of Medical Device Regulation Bill for comprehensive regulation of the medical devices in the country,” she elaborated. She also added that to support the corresponding need for trained human resource, the National Institute of Pharmaceutical Education and Research (NIPER), Ahmedabad has been mandated to initiate a National Centre for Medical Devices (NCMD) for development of skilled manpower.
Also present at the function were members of the medical technology industry including the science community, industry – big corporates as well as small and medium businesses represented by their associations, consumer and citizen organizations, international organizations and development partners, experts and government officials from central ministries and States and other key stakeholders.