NHSRC to be WHO Collaborating Centre for Medical Devices and Health Technology Policy

Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (MoHFW), Governmnet of India in collaboration with World Health Organization (WHO) re-designated the National Health Systems Resource Centre (NHSRC), as the WHO Collaborating Centre for Priority Medical Devices and Health Technology Policy.

About National Health Systems Resource Centre (NHSRC)

It was established in 2006. The NHSRC is mandated to assist in policy and strategy development in provision and mobilization of technical assistance to states. It is also mandated to provide capacity building for Health Ministry.

The mandate of Division of Healthcare Technology at NHSRC is to draw up technical specifications for technologies procured under National Health Mission (NHM), draft policies for medical device maintenance and management, undertake evaluations of health product innovations, conduct Health Technology Assessments (HTA), and support MoHFW on issues related to diagnostics initiative, National Dialysis Program (NDP) and other technology intensive services.

NHSRC and WHO

In 2019 NHSRC in collaboration with WHOs’ country’s office developed a guidance document for Health Ministry’s free diagnostics initiative to further strengthen agenda of Universal access to affordable diagnostics. In past NHSRC (as a collaborating centre) also supported WHO in formulating technical specifications for medical devices like resuscitation devices (devices wich initiate spontaneous breathing by mechanically ventilating the lungs), oxygen concentrators and now continues to support evaluation of innovations for WHO’s compendium on innovative devices.

NHSRC also works with WHO on development of technical specification of Blood pressure measuring devices, in-vitro diagnostics and devices for cardiovascular diseases (CVD) and cancer.

Future collaboration between two includes work on International Classification and Nomenclature for Medical Devices (ICMD), which would improve access to affordable health technologies.

Significance: Such global collaborations in area of health technology ensures that research and development (R&D), scientific and technological advances and innovative technologies play a substantial supportive role in healthcare. It also enables both players involved to reach public health goals and achieve universal health coverage (UHC).

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