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As Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman is scheduled to present Union Budget 2022 on 1 February, the healthcare sector has urged the government to increase spending on genetic research.

Budget 2022 should allocate funds for the development of resources that enable the monitoring of the genomic-related health status of populations. Also, more grants should be made available for genetic research.

“Currently, India has the youngest workforce but with dropping fertility rates and increasing lifespan, we are going to have a huge surge in health care expenses in the next 10 to 20 years. The lifestyle disease incidence is doubling every 10 years. It is imperative for the government to get Genome Mapping done, this will provide the much-needed data to discover cures for complex conditions. Government should promote public-private partnerships for Genome Mapping projects. The financial budget 2022-23, should allocate funds for the development of resources that enable monitoring of the genomic-related health status of populations. Also, more grants should be made available for genetic research," says Dr Hima Jyothi Challa, Director, GenepoweRx.

“Healthcare systems internationally are investing heavily to implement personalized medicine because there is a clear opportunity to develop more efficient and effective healthcare delivery systems. India cannot waste more time if the country wants to become a globally significant personalized medicine and innovation hub," she added.

Tarun Gupta, Founder of Si Cure Mi says "Indian Startups working in the healthcare domain using deep technologies for building tools and platforms for Early diagnosis, Pre-screening and Predictive analysis of health conditions require extensive and continued support and guidance at multiple levels. Fortunately, The government of India has been very liberal and encouraging towards such start-ups at an early stage so far. I personally believe, as the way forward, More support and incentive schemes should be provided beyond the early stage which is indeed “Valley of death". This major step if realized will promote research and development, reduce turnaround time and greatly enhance the chances of their success."

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