Budget 2023: Industry leaders from diagnostics sector demand GST exemptions, standarised tests

Union Budget 2023: Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman will announce the Union Budget 2023-24 on 1 February 2023. Ahead of the budget, key industry leaders from the

healthcare sector have demanded that the upcoming budget should focus on increasing government health expenditure on health as a percentage of GDP. According to the

latest National Health Accounts Report, it has been stagnant at around 1.2-1.3 percent. In the diagnostics segment, industry experts told Financial Express.com that the

coronavirus pandemic brought the significance of diagnostics and timely screening to the forefront. ‘Screening programmes under Ayushman Bharat scheme’ Narendra

Varde, MD, Roche Diagnostics India and Neighbouring Markets, told Financial Express.com that In India, diagnostics accounts only for 2 per cent of healthcare spending while

diagnostics influence over 66 percent of clinical decision-making. “India critically needs to introduce screening programmes under the Ayushman Bharat scheme for

infections such as HIV, hepatitis and HPV leading to cervical cancer in women. Moreover, introducing population screening for infectious disease will facilitate future-proofing of

the health system. More emphasis is required on quality standards and better patient outcomes. Public-private partnerships (PPP) must have a commitment towards end-to-end project

support and the primary importance should be an accessible and uninterrupted supply of critical medical solutions,” Varde told Financial Express.com.