The healthcare and medical device industries parallel one another. Changes in healthcare practices are reflected in the medical device industry. In addition to this relationship, new FDA regulations have influenced medical device industry trends.
These trends impact medical device design, innovation, and technology. As a result, the way medical devices are being approached by its producers, distributors, and consumers changes in the anticipated future of the industry.
What do these look like and how are they affecting the med device industry? Here are 4 medical device industry trends to keep an eye on:
1. Antimicrobial Innovation
Antimicrobial use is not the newest of all medical device industry trends. However, given changes in the healthcare market, antimicrobial innovation is quickly changing. Med Device Online reports that the combination of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) penalizations against healthcare facilities with high infection rates and increasingly informed consumers—err on the side of social networks and sites like Hospital Compare and Zocdoc—has added to increasing antimicrobial device industry trends.
Yet, this pressure to lower infection rates isn’t isolated to healthcare facilities. Now the pressure is weighing on manufacturers to design med devices for infection prevention. Med device manufacturers have already incorporated antimicrobials into previously designed medical devices. Antimicrobial use and innovation have expanded for use in 3D printing and permanent implants.
2. Growing Wearable Market
Wearable devices are extremely prominent. The global medical wearable devices market was valued at more than $3.2 billion in 2015, and Mordor Intelligence expects the wearable market to surpass $7.9 billion by 2020. Fitbit and other wearable giants are introducing more advancements into their products. These innovations include:
- Larger, easy to read displays
- Breathing exercises
- Extended battery life
- Waterproof hardware
- Compatibility with a smartphone’s GPS sensor
The wearable market is expanding not only because of its ability to be autonomous and non-invasive but because of its penetration to combat incidences of chronic diseases. An example of this is Omron’s new wearable medical devices that feature built-in blood pressure monitoring.
However, the use of wearables in healthcare is different than that of Fitbit and other fitness trackers. Medical device manufacturers run into the issue of gathering clean data from a single wearable device. Often data collected from one device is clouded by noise if put on haphazardly by the patient. For now, multiple wearables can sufficiently monitor and measure the symptoms of disease progression.
3. Focus on Patient-Centricity Practices
Consumers have never been as informed as they are today. Consumers are researching different products and services online before making the decision to buy. The medical world is no exception. Healthcare professionals have changed how they practice medicine to conform to patient-centric models. Patient-centric practices are more personalized, simplified, transparent, and efficient healthcare solutions than ever before.
With the advent of the patient-centric era, the FDA announced its first-ever Patient Engagement Advisory Committee (PEAC). PEAC focuses on patient engagement and provides input on issues relating to medical devices, the regulation of these devices, and their use by patients. Of all the medical device industry trends, patient-centricity may make the biggest splash in the medical device pool. Nearly every tier of a med device maker—marketing, sales, operations—will have to pivot communications and strategies. Patient preference information needs to be updated and changed in medical device collateral like sales literature and data sheets.
4. Outsourcing Clinical Trial Services to CROs
Medical device industry trends are driven by different factors. According to Medical Design & Outsourcing, global medical device companies are outsourcing clinical trial services to contract research organizations (CROs) at a current adoption rate of 20-25 percent.
Medical device makers are outsourcing more of their Class III/II trials to CROs. CROs are able to provide expertise, staff, and innovative technologies. On the other side of the coin, med device manufacturers are able to reduce costs and realign their focus on business critical operations. As a result of outsourcing clinical trial services to CROs, medical device makers are more equipped to manage business risks.
How are med device manufacturers updating their content to adapt to these medical device industry trends? Siemens medical healthcare division uses Mimeo to create high-quality proposals with updated content. Read more here.