Evolution 2020: How the pandemic has expedited the growth of India’s medtech industry
According to reports, medical devices that represent 6% of the country’s healthcare industry are valued at USD 5.2 billion and projected to reach USD 50 billion by 2025.
India’s medical industry has achieved phenomenal growth over the years and a large chunk of this progress can be attributed to the advent of technology. With advancing technology, the country’s medtech industry has cemented its position as one of the leading healthcare providers across the world with best-in-class facilities and caregivers such as doctors and nurses at optimised costs when compared to other nations in the world.
The onset of the pandemic, however, put the efficiency of the country’s medtech industry to the test. With rising cases of COVID-19 and limited capacity, the medical industry was forced to evolve rapidly to combat the ongoing crisis.
Medical technology is one industry where change is the only constant and the pandemic has presented the perfect opportunity for innovations in the industry to be brought forth. The country’s medtech industry is currently at crossroads owing to the global crisis. With that as a backdrop, let us take a look at how the pandemic has fast-tracked the growth of the Indian medtech industry.
Indigenous products: ‘Make in India’ is gaining traction
The pandemic brought with it countless restrictions and supply chains across the world took a major hit, adversely impacting the import and export of critical medical equipment. As a consequence, the medical industry was confronted with innumerable challenges since a majority of healthcare facilities relied on imported medical equipment to provide adequate care to patients, paving the way for the industry to realise the importance of home-grown products.
Across various verticals, the ‘Make in India’ movement has gained immense traction and the medtech industry, too, has caught up quickly. Certain crucial medical devices that were earlier imported are now being manufactured in India, ensuring affordable and easy procurement of components.
The country has also grown to be amongst the top 20 markets for medical devices in the world and the fourth largest in Asia. These numbers speak volumes about the breakneck pace at which the country’s medtech industry is growing.
During the pre-COVID era, patients who required critical care were usually shifted from smaller clinics or hospitals to bigger, multi-specialty healthcare institutions that offered top-tier facilities. But today, with the quickly rising number of COVID-19 cases across the country putting a strain on healthcare staff and hospitals, even smaller hospitals have bolstered their infrastructure. There is increased adoption of tech-led solutions that can provide accurate treatment to patients leaving no room for human error.
Increased home care and health investments
Due to the easily transmissible nature of the virus, people are now hesitant to visit hospitals even for simple ailments, paving the way for home care to evolve. Even in the case of a COVID-19 patient, unless the individual’s state is critical, i.e., they require ventilator support, healthcare staff is advising them to remain under home quarantine and increase the intake of fluids and immunity-boosting foods.
This increase in home care has created a newfound demand for medtech equipment that is suitable for household usage. Additionally, people are also more conscious and concerned about hygiene, safety, and health, leading to health and safety-related investments such as insurance taking a front seat.
Today, with the pandemic continuing its onslaught in the country, the medtech industry is at a critical threshold where there is a huge scope for growth which can be accelerated by leveraging cutting-edge technology and blending it with efficient and highly skilled manpower.
Furthermore, fostering research and innovation will help in scaling up manufacturing and help companies in the sector take a futuristic approach. With this, India’s medtech sector will be poised to reach significant milestones, thereby driving the country to become a world leader in healthcare.
(Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of YourStory.)