2018 – CHALLENGES AND OPPORTUNITIES IN MEDICAL DEVICES

Emergo Group, this year, conducted a study with over 4200 industry professions in the Medical Devices industry. One of their key questions to senior managers was –

WHAT IS THE BIGGEST CHALLENGE YOU FACE?

FUNDING /CAPITAL/ FINANCING – 35%

NEW PRODUCT DEVELOPMENT – 47%

CHANGING REGULATORY ENVIRONMENT – 68%

CHANGING REIMBURSEMENT – 18%

RETENTION/RECRUITMENT – 26%

INCREASED COMPETITION – 23%

PROFITABILITY PRESSURES – 35%

KEEP CHANGE WITH TECHNOLOGY – 18%

OTHER – 6%

There was very little surprise that Regulatory Changes scored so highly as we grow closer to the deadline. This is a catalyst that then has an impact on the other factors especially profitability, funding and recruitment

However, through conversations with Thought Leaders and Industry Executives, there is great deal to be very optimistic about in 2018. Some of these challenges also create opportunities for others.

OPPORTUNITIES FOR 2018

CHANGING LANDSCAPE – BREXIT

As this draws closer, there is an opportunity to have closer direct links with the USA and Asia. This could simplify and make it less costly to obtain permits for Medical Devices through UK Regulatory Bodies.

NEW PARTNERSHIPS

This is across the Medtech supply chain. In order for UK companies to stay competitive, sourcing specialised partners from around the world for specialist manufacturing requirements is growing.

MEDICAL INNOVATION

E- Health – Apple are currently working on a HealthKit Service. The goal is making healthcare data available to consumers and healthcare providers, to view in one place. This presents new opportunities on the horizon for medical device manufacturers.

Other examples: Robotic Technology with endoscopic technology for minimal invasive; Developments in Biotechnology sees innovative biomaterials to replace mechanical replacement joints

DEMOGRAPHIC TRENDS

Higher life expectancy. This trend is related to the following example of development – greater demand for diagnostic equipment to detect illnesses at an early stage, to prevent higher costs later.

NEW MARKETS

This year these a abundance of new players in very new mature markets. Examples include would care, coronary stents and orthopaedic devices. Small companies with innovative business models and very competitive prices are showing signs of being able to enter these markets successfully.

In conclusion, many companies we spoke to expect to sales grow by 5-10% this year, recruitment to grow by 8-12% and over 80% expect to see an increase in profitability compared to 2017. These are exciting times in the medical devices industry.

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