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Medical Device Market Strong

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The medical device market is bullish. Opportunities are expanding beyond traditional countries and regions. Demographic trends point to sustained growth. Those are the market highlights for an industry that shows enormous potential, according to Chip Harvill, the Vice President of Cadence, Inc., a contract manufacturing solution provider that works in the medical device industry.

While the primary markets for medical device manufacturing continue to be the U.S. and Brazil, Russia, India and China (BRIC countries), opportunities are likely to develop in Mexico because of its proximity to the U.S. and the lower labor costs, Harvill explained. He also noted some major issues in both China and Brazil that could affect markets. In China, there are regulatory challenges, as well as issues surrounding IP protections. In Brazil, surgical devices designed for a single use are frequently reused, presenting safety and regulatory issues.

One major challenge facing the medical device industry as a whole is the new tax that was levied as part of the Affordable Care Act. Harvill noted that when the government instituted this three percent tax, companies passed it along to suppliers to keep their costs down. Companies also reduced spending on research and development and decreased the pool of new engineering hires. There is now a strong movement lobbying to have the tax repealed, which would improve overall industry growth, he argued.

On a more positive note, the medical device industry is benefiting enormously from current demographic trends, which has Baby Boomers retiring in large numbers and needing more medical devices. Harvill explained that this growth could even continue as Generation X begins to seek more preventative medicine and companies manufacture medical devices that help promote wellbeing and keep patients out of surgery.

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