By Tricitynews Reporter
Chandigarh 17th August:- The Symposium is the fourth in the series of such academic meetings organized by Prof. G D Puri and Prof. Joseph Mathew. This year’s Symposium was organized to strengthen the platform for collaboration between medical scientists, technology experts and industry colleagues- under the DST umbrella of promoting innovative solutions for health-care needs.
Modern health care is highly technology dependent and therefore cost intensive. In fact, many people in India are impoverished every year by the high cost of health-care related to investigations, diagnostic tests and treatment. There is an urgent need to develop indigenous health technologies to make health-care affordable and accessible to the common man. India is blessed with many intelligent minds working to create innovative devices and instruments. Government of India is amply supporting these efforts through funding support, creation of research facilities and excellent initiatives such as “make in India” campaign. However, despite this, many innovative technologies fail to reach the users. This is often because they are not subjected to extensive clinical testing and regulatory approvals.
In this regard, PGIMER Chandigarh has taken the initiative to encourage innovation and carry the innovative ideas through the stages of design, development and testing (in the lab as well as hospital). Dr. Puri and Dr. Mathew have been working with a team of scientists from various institutions to create a Biomedical Instruments and Devices Hub in Chandigarh. There is active participation from PGIMER, CSIO, IIT Ropar, IISER Mohali, Panjab University, UIET, IIT Mandi, INST Mohali, SCL Mohali and several other institutions in Punjab, Haryana, and Himachal Pradesh. Today’s Symposium was to build on this collaborative framework.
Inaugurating the Symposium, Prof. Jagat Ram, Director PGIMER lauded the efforts of scientists to develop indigenous low-cost technology solutions that can be used for the common man. He stressed the need to focus on adequate clinical testing and clinical validation to ensure that the Products reach clinical use. Prof. Rajesh Kumar, Dean (Academic) of PGIMER highlighted the need to create pools of multi-disciplinary expertise so that medical experts, engineers, technology experts, and industry partners could join hands; for developing useful instruments and devices. Prof. D. Behera, Dean (Research) emphasized the leading role played by PGIMER in research and development; and the importance of creating solutions for the problems faced by the common man. Prof. A. Rajwanshi, Sub Dean (Academic) of PGIMER suggested that these efforts could be expanded further by encouraging young minds in various disciplines to think of the problems faced by people every day; and work towards solving them.
The highlight of the Symposium was a special session on Biomedical Innovations wherein national experts shared their experience and expertise. The session was chaired by Prof. M. M. Nayak, a renowned expert in nano-technology based at the prestigious Indian Institute of Science, Bengaluru. He led the deliberations on the current status of Indian innovations and the way forward. Dr. V. Sudhakar, from Defence Research and Development Organization’s Aeronautical Development Agency (at Bangalore) highlighted the efforts of the National Programme on Smart materials (NPMASS) and its biomedical applications. The Programme exploits the country’s vast expertise in nano-technology to create medically useful products. Mr. Mohammed Ameel, from the Health Ministry’s National Health Systems Resource Centre at New Delhi spoke about the country’s thrust towards streamlining the procurement of medical instruments and devices; and steps towards Health Technology Assessment. This is a growing global discipline and India is on track at par with the world. Prof. N S Dinesh, from Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore; highlighted the challenges in developing viable healthcare products fit for clinical use. Prof. N. S. Dinesh (I.I.Sc) stressed the importance of meticulous clinical and laboratory research as well as the numerous challenges faced in developing innovative products. Dr. Shyama Nagarajan heads an NGO called Saha Manthran, working to deliver health-care technologies to the unreached population in India. She highlighted the role of innovators in achieving this goal. Dr. Suchita Markan (Biotech Consortium of India Limited) described the pathway from innovative idea to commercialization. She presented the challenges and solutions available for this.
Over 160 experts from 22 institutions participated in the Symposium. 24 new innovative ideas were presented for development. These included technologies that could be very helpful in clinical practice such as: Non-invasive complete haemogram measurement device, Vein detection device for collapsed patients, Water alkalinity converter device, Sensing platforms for multiple biomarkers, and Hand glove for finger movement’s measurement. In addition, ideas feasible for public health were also presented such as a Comprehensive tele-school health equipment, and Smart Street Food Cart. Innovators from regional institutions also presented hi-tech ideas such as Photoacoustic Spectroscopic and Tomographic Device for Sentinel Lymph Node detection, Development of Z- Probe for endoscopy, and Optical sensors for the detection of lung cancer. A special session in the Symposium was devoted to Industry presentations wherein representatives from prestigious companies highlighted their innovations and achievements. These companies included Clarity Medical (Mohali), Tynor (Mohali), Esteem Industries (Baddi), Incredible Devices (Chandigarh), Scope Medical (Ambala) and Advance Tech (Zirakpur). PGIMER Faculty also presented several unique innovations including a Point of care Device for AMD, Smart Street Food Cart, Teaching aid Stethoscope, Rotationally Stable Telescopic Intramedullary Nail System, Thermoregulation device, and specially modified Endotracheal Tube with bite block and subglottic suction system.