New Delhi, Jan 4 (PTI) A new list of essential diagnostics has been formulated by the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) to enhance accessibility to diagnostic tests and reduce out-of-pocket expenditure, Minister of State for Health Anupriya Patel told the Lok Sabha Friday.

The National Essential Diagnostics List (EDL) has been drafted after consultation with policymakers, clinicians, laboratories, functionaries in national health programmes; manufacturers and innovators.

The list is now available on the ICMR website and open for comments till January 31, 2019.

“The move is aimed to attain universal healthcare and the list prescribes standard of requirement of minimum distance to a healthcare facility, equipments, skilled health workers, accessibility to diagnostic tests and also reducing out-of-pocket expenditure on this account, by promoting research and development for new, appropriate and effective diagnostics,” Patel said in reply to a question.

The finalised list will be reviewed by an expert group for updating and planing the implementation, on the lines of the National Essential Medicines List. Prices for these EDL may only be fixed after finalisation and approval of the list, Patel said.

Once finalised and notified, it would help people access around 160 diagnostic tests at a uniform and affordable price.

This is published unedited from the PTI feed.