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Friday, Sep 20, 2019

Faulty medical devices panel awaiting official message

On November 29, the Drug and Technical Advisory Board (DTAB), a statutory body, had announced the constitution of a 10-member subcommittee to fix compensation for faulty medical devices, especially in cases of death and injury.

india Updated: Jan 11, 2019 14:44 IST
Rhythma Kaul
Rhythma Kaul
New Delhi
FILE PHOTO: Bottles of Johnson & Johnson baby powder line a drugstore shelf in New York October 15, 2015. REUTERS/Lucas Jackson/File Photo
FILE PHOTO: Bottles of Johnson & Johnson baby powder line a drugstore shelf in New York October 15, 2015. REUTERS/Lucas Jackson/File Photo(REUTERS)
         

The subcommittee set up by the Union health ministry in November last year following the payouts for Johnson & Johnson (J&J) faulty implants is caught up in red tape, with some of its members claiming they have not yet been informed that they are a part of the panel.

On November 29, the Drug and Technical Advisory Board (DTAB), a statutory body, had announced the constitution of a 10-member subcommittee to fix compensation for faulty medical devices, especially in cases of death and injury.

“I have not received any information, maybe I missed their email,” said one of the members, on the condition of anonymity.

Another member of the panel said he had also not received official intimation but had been informally told about the subcommittee by another committee member. “I got to know that I was a part through a committee member...there is a miscommunication, it isn’t deliberate,” he said, requesting anonymity.

Pavan Choudary, chairman, Medical Technology Association of India (MTaI), who is also a committee member, said he has begun preparations although he is yet to be informed about the first meeting. MTal represents medical device companies.

“It’s an intricate and mammoth task. Even the preparation requires taking many technical angles into account... MTaI compliments CDSCO [Central Drugs Standard Control Organisation] and DTAB and reposes trust in their prioritisation of the tasks involved,” he added.

Committee chairman, Dr BD Athani, principal consultant with directorate general of health services, confirmed a meeting has not been scheduled yet.

“There is a due process that needs to be followed. You cannot hold a meeting if most members are not available...,” said a health ministry official, requesting anonymity.

First Published: Jan 10, 2019 08:59 IST