With aging population and advancements in technology, the orthopedic sector is expecting a series of highly-effective medical devices.
FREMONT, CA: Increasing awareness regarding the availability of innovative devices is allowing the hospitals to upgrade their services and devices continually. Moreover, reimbursement coverage of orthopedic treatment has led to the incorporation of orthopedic surgeries. Such factors are allowing customers to choose high-priced and advanced devices. The large, complex, and competitive medical device market is growing. Citing the above and various other factors, here are the top three trends which can enable to speculate what’s in store for the future:
1. Cost Control
With the orthopedic device market become more commoditized, there is a larger focus on affordable instrumentation, implants, and delivery systems. It is resulting from the combined effect of the growing demand for procedures and the ongoing pricing pressure in the market. Medical instrument firms are trying to reduce the price of getting their products into the reach of the people who need them across the globe. Cost control is gaining further importance as expanding regulatory requirements are resulting in increased expense, which is affecting margins even more. Thus medical device companies are working hard to offset non-value added expenses and mitigate regulatory expense and supply chain. Companies that can meet the regulatory terms in an efficient and simple way will have a serious competitive advantage over the others.
2. Product Innovation
Enhancing patient outcomes and offsetting procedure time is also getting increasingly important in healthcare. Moreover, within the orthopedics department, there is a significant aging population that will require more procedures. It is actually assumed that there won’t be enough orthopedic surgeons to address the increasing demand. Device firms will need to produce better instruments that will enable the orthopedists to perform more surgeries which can also reduce cost. Medical devices should also be simpler and user-friendly with less probability of error. However, keeping the devices affordable is another challenge here. Most of the products that are available in the market are sufficient for general needs. So unless a new product can offset the surgical time or enhance patient outcomes or serve a different cause altogether, hospitals will be unwilling to pay more. Another challenge that lies ahead for the medical device firms is to compete and meet the requirements of the market effectively.
3. Technology Advances: Computer-Aided Surgery, 3D Printing
Recently there has been a number of technology advances in the orthopedic market. Minimally invasive, robotic-assisted, and computer-aided surgery is gaining emphasis with the aim of improving precision, accuracy, and patient outcomes. Over a period of time, it may enable to create a more replicable and higher standard of care, and it may help to achieve the larger goal of reducing the total cost of care and surgical time. With further advancements in technology, the orthopedic supply chain must keep pace. However, when it comes to orthopedic procedures, the one thing that remains constant is that there will always be a demand for medical devices and tools that can shave, cut, and make holes in the bone.
3D printing is another technology that is slowly gaining presence across the industry. Even though not widespread, 3D printing is being used in manufacturing and orthopedic procedures for custom, prototype, and low volume solutions. The major advantage of 3D printing is that the implants can be absolutely customized as per the requirement of an individual and delivered within an extremely short time frame. However, as the implants are patient-specific, and therefore quite expensive, the technology has a relatively smaller niche of the market to target.
Though these were the major trends that are expected to impact the orthopedic sector in the future, the aging population will further propel advancements at a renewed pace.