We need to boost R&D so that we can innovate and make in India for the world: Himanshu Baid, Polymed Leave a comment

We need to boost R&D so that we can innovate and make in India for the world: Himanshu Baid, PolymedShahid Akhter, editor, ETHealthworld, spoke to Himanshu Baid, Director of Poly Medicure Limited, to know more about challenges and opportunities that can make the Govt’s vision of Atma Nirbhar Bharat a success story.

How is MedTech sector shaping up with Govt.’s focus on “Make in India”?
In last 2-3 years, Government has done a lot for MedTech sector; from 100% PLIs to PLI schemes for MedTech parks, they have come up with special incentives for Make in India by reducing the duty on raw materials & parts to 2.5%. The whole sector has now been regulated and also there is a continuous dialogue between the government & the industry on a regular basis ensuring whatever challenges and problems the industry faces, they will be taken care of at a faster pace. So these are the changes and also there is an ease of doing business. Lot of digitization is happening for filing applications to CDSCO and how they are being resolved in a very quick time, is also a remarkable achievement by the government.

For Polymed, we looked at what products are being imported into the country. We all know that there is around 70% reliance on imports for India which is something we need to change quickly. If we are reliant, especially in times of pandemics, we see the issue of shortage of products, people over-charging when there is a scarcity of products. So we as a company, decided to invest in Dialysis business which was again a 100% import dependent business, in terms of consumables & equipment. So, we started making dialysis products and Government of India was kind enough to bring out a PLI scheme for dialysis and many other medical devices .Polymed got selected for the scheme.

How does the future look like for India as a global player in medical devices?
Currently, India is only 2-3% of global medical device market; the global device market is around 400 billion today and India is only 11-12 billion dollars. So how do we change this trajectory? The most important thing is we have to increase per capita consumption of medical devices- from current 3-5 dollars we have to move to around 12-15 dollars, maybe in next 5-10 years. For that we need to reduce the cost of manufacturing in the country, we need to give assistance for R&D to companies so that we can innovate in India, make in India and make in India for the world. Once we scale up manufacturing at a global level, I think our products will become cost competitive and we will be able to then supply to almost every country in the world. We are already working on India 2047, the Government of India has already started on that visioning exercise and I personally feel that even if we grow at a rate of 12-15% in medical device sector, we’ll end up around 200 billion dollar by 2047, out of which easily India can export 40-50% of the products to global markets.

How has been the journey for Polymed & how is the company contributing in Govt’s vision of Atma Nirbhar Bharat?
Polymed will be completing 25 years in just next few weeks from now. Its been a very enriching journey for me as the MD of the company. I have learnt a lot from my peers, doctors, clinicians & also from a lot of people of the industry who have taught me new things, new ideas and even the customers abroad who always give us new product ideas; how can we improve the product to the next level, how can we innovate further. Going forward, I think we have to do two things as a company- make the highest quality of products to serve the global population because today, I can proudly say that around 4 million devices manufactured at Polymed plants are used worldwide. The next important thing is ‘focus on innovation’. In this industry, every 2-3 years, you have to bring out new devices and that interaction with industry, academia has to continue to drive that innovation and as a company, our focus will be innovation & high quality going forward.


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