Sree Chitra Tirunal Institute, KSIDC join hands to set up ₹260-cr medical devices park

Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan
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Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan will lay the foundation stone for MedSpark on September 24

Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan
Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan

Thiruvananthapuram-based Sree Chitra Tirunal Institute for Medical Sciences and Technology will join hands with the Kerala government to set up a 260-crore medical devices park, the institute has said in a release.

To be called MedSpark, the medical devices park will come up in the Life Sciences Park of the Kerala State Industrial Development Corporation (KSIDC) at Thonnakkal in Thiruvanthapuram. Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan will lay the foundation stone for MedSpark on September 24, the release said.

SCTIMST is an institute of national importance under the Department of Science and Technology (DST).

While KSIDC will spend 125 crore for creating infrastructure, the remaining funds for equipment and manpower cost in early stages will be from existing funding schemes of the Central and State government, said SCTIMST Director Asha Kishore. Subsequently it is expected to be a self-sustaining one with operational expenses coming from revenue streams.

Role of MedSpark

The major objectives of MedSpark are to create an enabling support system for research and development, testing and evaluation of medical devices, manufacturing support, technology innovation and knowledge dissemination to Indian medical devices industry. This full range of services will be available not only to the firms located in MedSpark, but also to those from other parts of the country.

This will be of immense value, particularly to the small and medium sized medical devices industries which dominate the Indian medical devices sector, the release said.

“Sree Chitra Tirunal Insitute had conceived establishing a medical devices park under the Technical Research Centre for Biomedical devices programme of the DST. This was made possible by entering into a knowledge partnership with KSIDC, capitalising our individual strengths and tapping the ecosystem that exists in the city with several research and academic institutions and health care centres,” said Kishore.

This is a big step for the institute and this came to fruition because of encouragement and support of Kerala government, DST, other Government of India departments, NITI Aayog and former Cabinet Secretary and ex-president of SCTIMST, K M Chandrasekhar, she said.

“The distinct aspect that will distinguish this Medical Device Park from the few other similar projects proposed in the country is that it will focus on the high risk medical device sector involving medical implants and extracorporeal devices, the domain in which SCTIMST has considerable expertise and experience,” said Ashutosh Sharma, DST Secretary.

“The institute has made substantial contributions to the biomedical devices sector over the last 30 or more years and has established itself as a pioneer in this field. This is a milestone for biomedical devices industry in the country and is fully aligned with the Prime Minister’s vision of Aatmanirbhar Bharat,” said V K Saraswat, NITI Aayog Member and the President of SCTIMST.

Currently, Kerala has a number of medical device companies with an annual turnover in excess of 750 crores, most of them operating with technologies transferred from SCTIMST.

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