Budget and healthcare: Spending hike expected

Published: February 25, 2015 3:17:59 PM

The healthcare sector is pegging hopes on a hike in healthcare spend to at least 2.5 per cent of the GDP in the next two years.

The healthcare sector is pegging hopes on a hike in healthcare spend to at least 2.5 per cent of the GDP in the next two years. The sector is hopeful of incentives to boost domestic innovation in medical equipment, which could be in the form of income-tax write-off of 250 per cent of research and development expenses as well as in the form of creation of medical technology parks. The sector is also eyeing incentives to boost health insurance. These could be in the form of group insurance for unorganised workers, mandatory medical insurance for employees for companies having employees above certain threshold and enhanced income tax deduction for the same.

“We hope the Budget will sanction favourable policies to foster an innovation-driven ecosystem that addresses the unmet medical need in India. Impetus to healthcare and biopharmaceuticals is critical in finding innovative solutions to address the huge disease burden especially in chronic health diseases such as cancer and diabetes, heart diseases and respiratory disorders.

– By Sanjay Murdeshwar, Managing Director, AstraZeneca Pharma India Ltd

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