A state-of-the-art laboratory for testing of medical textiles has been proposed by the South Indian Textile Research Association (SITRA), Coimbatore.

Union Minister of Textiles, Piyush Goyal, recently presented a proposal to the director of the institute, Prakash Vasudevan. Several products have been developed under the Centre of Excellence at SITRA. Over 70 medical textile products were given quality standards under the Bureau of Indian Standards. However, the facilities available at SITRA currently, could test only 30 of these products. There is no provision for anti-viral testing and biodegradability testing at the centre currently.

Many of these tests could be carried out if there was the state-of-art-testing facility established there. If the facility was established, it would be easier to carry out the testing for healthcare sector and the industry, including the products for export. The proposal included a plan to setup a testing laboratory in a budget of Rs 25 cr. The director further said that they had submitted the proposal to the Textile Committee and were waiting to hear from the Ministry of Textiles.

The Minister suggested that this could be completed as a joint venture between SITRA and BIS. The director added that they wanted to cover all the 70 products and that they aim at establishing the centre in the next two years.He further said that they would need to import some of the machinery.