by Khaled Shahbaaz
HBy 2020, India will be the pharmacy capital of the world exporting a major chunk of the world’s pharmacy needs. Indian pharmacy industry will be an estimated $55 billion business by 2020 with exports of over $19 billion,” said Indian Pharmaceutical Association president Dr. T. V. Narayana.
Addressing the inaugural session of two-day national conference SynchroPharma 2019 organized by the Sultan ul Uloom College of Pharmacy (SUCP) in Hyderabad, Prof. Narayana said: “Indian pharmacy industry has grown tremendously from its first pharmacy in Kolkata in 1901 to becoming a $33 billion business today with more than $17 billion in exports. “Indian Pharmacy industry ranks third at the global level after China and US if nutritional value and pharma were combined.”
“In terms of pharma alone, India ranks number one at the global level”. Today, India has a 30 percent share in the global pharmacy market, with Hyderabad contributing to more than 30% of the country’s pharmacy needs.
He said most pharmacy colleges focus on traditional skills and do not focus on problem solving and R&D activities, unlike in developed countries where students are exposed to more R&D in class rooms. India produces more than 60,000 pharmacy teachers, and more than 400,000 pharmacy students every year, he added.
Speaking at the national conference, Pharmacy Council of India president Prof. B. Suresh said “it is the era of super specialization and pharmacists must become super specialists to be able to bring changes to the health state of the society and the country.” He said “I dream to see pharmacists, one day, skilled in multiple disciplines, and be able to stand shoulder to shoulder with the physician and prescribe medicines.”
“They must be able to develop revolutionary drugs that can change the landscape of India pharma industry and also the world.”
Pharmaceutical stalwarts including former presidents of Indian Pharmaceutical Association Dr. Rao Vadla Mudi and Dr. J.A.S.Giri, Dr. B. Suresh adorned the inaugural event.
Advising students, he said “the best way to predict the future is to plan for it”. Students must develop the capability “to strategize changes and develop new drugs at cost effective prices.”
Mobile phones and tablets are not the crystal ball to predict future. “Knowledge today is transcending all barriers of the light and speed.”
Prof. Suresh said “brains are more powerful than super computers, and 7 billion brains around the world are the biggest resource of power. Using the combined power of these 7 billion brains could solve the world’s problems in a blink.”
Vice Chancellor of Jawaharlal Nehru Technological University Prof. Venu Gopal Reddy said Artificial Intelligence systems will dominate the pharma industry in the near future, and only at the higher clinical level, human intervention will be required.” He said “the computational power available to us today, will help the pharma system to speed up drug design and development.”
“Innovation and creativity are the most important skills in the industry, and must be cultivated in the educational institutions only.” He advised students to become job creators instead of job-seekers by transforming ideas to prototypes and gradually transforming the prototype to products.
SUCP Principal Dr. Anupama Koneru, SUES Secretary Zafar Javeed, Vice Chairman Mohammed Waliullah, SUES Treasurer and SUCP Chairman Dr. Mir Akbar Ali Khan, Dr. Manohar Karvekar — Member Pharmacy Council of India, Mohammed Jaffar and others were also present on this occasion.
SUCP Professor Dr. V. Murali Balaram presented a vote of thanks.
Article first appeared on Saudi Gazette.