Member of the World Bank Group, International Finance Corporation, is investing USD 16.5 million (around Rs 123 crore) in genetic diagnostics and research company called MedGenome to increase the access to COVID-19 testing in India.
IFC and MedGenome said in a statement on Thursday that apart from the increased access to COVID-19 testing, the partnership, will also support research in order to understand the virus better, its variants and manage future outbreaks.
It added, IFC’s USD 16.5 million equity investment will support the growth of MedGenome’s diagnostic services as well as boost genomic data from South Asian populations, which can help provide valuable insights into complex diseases and help develop effective medical solutions for varied populations.
MedGenome Founder and Chairman Sam Santhosh said, “With IFC’s support, we will continue to expand our services across India, bringing tests directly to the communities most affected by the pandemic, and finding genetic variants that might be making some people more susceptible to severe COVID-19 infection and post-COVID illness.”
One of the most important steps to end the pandemic is speedy, reliable, and extensive testing, he said.
“This investment will help increase access to reliable testing and monitoring of the virus, as well as identify life-saving treatments. Our overall aim is to help India strengthen its healthcare systems, build resilience, and ramp up recovery from the pandemic,” IFC Managing Director Makhtar Diop said.
He added, when India is facing an unprecedented crisis because of COVID-19, IFC’s partnership with MedGenome comes at this critical time.
The investment in MedGenome is part of IFC’s USD 4 billion Global Health Platform, which is providing financing to support the manufacturing and supply of vaccines, medical equipment, and therapeutics, as well as the logistics required to deliver vaccines and medications, it added.
IFC is a leading global development institution focused on the private sector in developing countries. It advances economic expansion and improves the lives of people by encouraging the growth of the private sector in developing countries.