Student Dissertation

Agency : Indian Dialysis Market; Market Analysis; Dialysis Industry; Demand and Supply

Objective : The objective of this study is to understand and analyze overall Indian dialysis market. To identify untapped potential of dialysis market in India and study factors affecting growth of dialysis industry.

Background : Dialysis is one of the initial technological innovations in medicinal therapy - and the only treatment that does not require transplant, and yet allows a patient to live long, healthy and productive life with end stage organ failure (ESRF). Currently, about 2.4 million people are alive on dialysis worldwide. In India, dialysis is considered as reserved for the affluent class or to those lucky enough to be eligible for full medical reimbursement under insurance or health policy. Everyone else faces crippling long-term expenditure and descent towards deep poverty. It is estimated that about 200,000 new patients develop end-stage kidney failure (ESRD) every year in India. Even though about 70-80% of them actually could start dialysis, but resource limitations force about two-thirds of the starters to discontinue or withdraw and be condemned to death. Estimates put the number of patients on dialysis in India currently at around 1, 00,000. India’s demand for dialysis is growing fast at a rate of 31%, compared to 6 % in the US and 8 % in the rest of the world. Mathematical modelling using data from comparable countries shows that if access to treatment was not a problem, or restricted, this number would be approximately 1,100,000, highlighting a large unmet need, and therefore a good business investment opportunity.

Methodology : The research design used in this study was both ‘Descriptive’ and ‘exploratory’ carried out at PWC (Price WaterHouse Cooper) Gurgaon office from 13th February to 13th May 2017.

Findings : A major gap is lack of reliable data about dialysis in India to guide practice. The number of trained dialysis technicians’ staff and nurses is woefully small. There is a huge demand supply gap in dialysis industry which need immediate attention of society. Also, affordability and accessibility play a major role in the huge gap. From a business point of view, it is quite profitable to invest in a dialysis unit or chain. There are cities and areas where the demand supply gap and paying capacity of patient is favorable to set up dialysis unit. Also, the maintenance and operational cost of a single dialysis is quite less as compared to the charges of dialysis in market, so it is quite wise to invest in a dialysis unit.

Recommendations : The demand for dialysis is only going to rise, and the government along with society urgently needs to explore cost-effective and scalable solutions over a relatively short time frame. One option can be promoting peritoneal dialysis, which is quite cheaper, does not require infrastructure and much of manpower. Industry also needs to come to the fore - with indigenous manufacturing of dialysis machines and disposables, which will reduce the cost. There is a global drive to find cheaper dialysis solutions, only then will Indian patients be able to get the full benefit of this lifesaving therapy. There has been a noticeable increase in the number of nephrologist training and positioning, and at this time about 160 seats are available every year. Efforts are being made to scientifically evaluate outcomes of patients on dialysis through systematic studies and to increase its effectiveness. Also, government initiatives like National Dialysis Program (NDP) and Rashtriya Swasthya Bima Yojana (RSBY) should be encouraged.


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