To bring the Indian pharmaceutical and biotechnology industry at par with international standards, the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare will seek only qualified candidates in the workforce. Those already working in the area will receive special training.
“With effect from January 1, 2018, no person shall be employed in any pharmaceuticals/bio pharmaceutical manufacturing units unless he has obtained a formal diploma or degree in the relevant area, or has been certified by the Life Sciences Sector Skill Development Council or equivalent organization in the area in which he has been deployed,” said Dr GN Singh, Drug Controller General of India.
The Central Drugs Standards Control Organisation (CDSCO) under the Union Health Ministry has written to all the pharmaceutical manufacturing units in the country to take steps for ensuring that persons employed by them are duly trained and certified.
“In India, it is a practice to hire employees that are undergraduates (10th and 12th pass), or graduate in general streams (BA, BCom) for different levels in pharmaceutical, life sciences and biotechnology industry. Companies prefer such candidates for various operational and economical reasons. Lack of qualified personnel affects the quality of products from these industries. We want to end this practice,” said Dr Singh.
“To improve the quality of pharmaceutical products, it is important that all personnel employed in pharmaceutical manufacturing units undergo certification programmes developed by Life Science Skill Sector Development Council,” he added.
The Council has also been tasked with upgrading the skills of persons already employed in the Life Sciences sector in the country.
The Council has, after an elaborate exercise and extensive consultations with industry, evolved some modes for certification. These are Post fresh skilling and assessment of eligible youth; and Post assessment under ‘Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL)’ for existing workforce in the industry.
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