Develop a medical device industry



The pharmaceutical industry has established itself in terms of production capacity and quality maintenance. So, it is no mystery that a few large pharmaceutical companies have achieved the enviable feat of exporting drugs to the United States of America (USA) market, which is known to approve drugs for use as a result of ‘rigorous testing and testing. The downside to the local drug market here is that there are also some drug makers that are not known to maintain high standards. Even a few scandalous incidents, including one involving the deaths of at least 25 children treated with paracetamol syrup, rocked the pharmaceutical industry. With the exception of such aberrations, including the manufacturing and marketing of certain types of fake drugs, the records of pharmaceutical companies in general are good. But for a medical intervention aimed at saving human lives, drugs are not the only way. Sometimes medical equipment, machinery and a host of paraphernalia are more critical for critical patients. By the time of the highest peak of Covid-19, this became particularly evident to everyone, even laymen.

According to a report in a newspaper, the annual size of the country’s medical device market is worth Tk 200 billion, of which local manufacturers can only reach a measly 4.0 percent. But only 30,000 kinds of a total of 2.0 million varieties of medical devices found in the world market are in demand in this country. Oddly enough, local production only includes a tiny number of these products such as disposable and insulin syringes, disposable needles, infusion kits, alcohol prep swabs, blood transfusion kits, bags. blood and gloves. Obviously, most of them are cheaper medical instruments and are made from plastic. What emerges from this is that a large part of the needs is bought abroad and the country has to spend the lion’s share of the Tk 200 billion on imports.

Obviously, there is a huge prospect for the development of a medical device industry in this country. If the demand can be met by local production, the country can save the money spent on importation. Following in the footsteps of the pharmaceutical industry, it can further explore the global export market as it is large and growing. There is no reason for Bangladesh to lag behind some of its neighboring countries which are making inroads in this area. This is an even less explored trade frontier for developing countries and therefore a quick entry into the fray can be a guarantee of certain success.

However, where things are proving somewhat daunting for investors in this industry is the larger size of the investment and a longer wait for return compared to other conventional industries. But once business picks up, there is no turning back. After all, like life-saving drugs, medical devices are also essential for the treatment and recovery of patients. The nightmarish experiences of ventilator shortages in hospitals around the world continue to haunt doctors, nurses and relatives of patients who have breathed their last for lack of this facility. There is no reason to believe that the coronavirus is the last such destructive agent. With the hectic climate, more pathogens will appear and medical equipment will be in great demand. It is therefore worth investing to develop a strong medical device industry.


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