How to make a living with medical appliances
Medical devices can provide an enormous amount of comfort and help patients with disabilities, as well as keep them out of the hospital and out of a car accident, according to a new study.
The medical equipment industry is a $70 billion-a-year industry, making it a booming business in a time of limited supplies and rising demand.
Medical device makers are using their own technologies to improve their products and reduce their risks.
“We are in an era of massive demand and huge growth for these devices, and yet the industry is not adequately prepared for this unprecedented wave of demand,” said Steven A. Cohen, a senior vice president at the consulting firm Avalere Health, which conducted the study with the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission.
“In light of these trends, it’s critical that the industry take steps to ensure its products and their technologies meet the highest standards.”
The study, conducted by Avalere, looked at how medical devices perform and are regulated by the Federal Trade Commission and other agencies.
It also looked at the industry’s ability to manage its growing costs.
The study found medical devices and appliances accounted for $1.8 trillion in sales in 2016.
Of that, medical devices made up just 5 percent of the overall industry, and the remaining 45 percent was comprised of other types of medical equipment and medical devices, such as dental and vision care.
The devices and medical products are used in more than 6.5 million surgeries each year, according the study, which looked at devices in the U, Canada, Australia and New Zealand.
That’s an increase of nearly 10 percent since 2000, when the industry made up less than 4 percent of all sales.
But the growth in the medical devices market is likely to slow over the next few years, because of rising prices and the need for more advanced technology.
For example, the cost of medical devices to treat acute respiratory infections has grown by nearly 400 percent since 2010, the study found.
And the industry still doesn’t have a reliable replacement for the breathing device the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends patients use.
The average cost of a device in 2016 was $7,800, and it is expected to reach $30,000 in 2020, according with Avalere.
Medical devices also account for about 20 percent of consumer spending on all consumer products, according, and have a growing share of consumer purchases.
In fact, the industry expects to account for 20 percent or more of all consumer spending in the next five years, the firm said.
“Our findings suggest that the medical device industry needs to make an investment in a strong and stable manufacturing environment to address its rapid growth, while also managing costs to minimize consumer risk,” Cohen said.
The research is based on the Consumer Product Liability Reform and Consumer Safety Act of 2018, which passed the House of Representatives on Wednesday and is awaiting the Senate’s vote.
The legislation, which was backed by the Trump administration, would require manufacturers to be certified by the FDA to make medical devices.
The bill is also expected to allow medical devices manufacturers to sell directly to consumers and to require insurance companies to cover medical devices that cost more than $300,000.
That could reduce the financial burden on the industry and lower costs for consumers, the researchers said.
But they said the industry needs better regulation to ensure medical devices are safe.
“For consumers, it is critical that health care providers and manufacturers have robust and transparent oversight of their medical device manufacturing processes and processes that allow consumers to know exactly what their medical devices cost and how much they can afford,” Cohen and his co-authors wrote in the study.
Avalere said the medical equipment sector also needs to work more closely with federal and state agencies.
“These are critical services, which are critical to patients,” said Anne-Marie Kornbluth, senior vice vice president of product strategy at Avalere who is also co-chair of Avalere’s medical device team.
The industry has been in crisis for years.
“It’s very difficult to find the right people for these roles and these positions, so we’ve really been forced to reinvent ourselves to meet these new needs,” KornBluth said.
That includes more training for doctors and nurses.
The AMA and the American Medical Association, the two largest medical groups in the country, have both called for tougher regulations.
But other industry groups have supported stronger regulation and a national consumer safety agency to oversee medical devices as they move from the manufacturing to the retail market.
“The AMA and AMA-CSA have long called for a federal agency to set standards for the manufacture, testing and labeling of medical device products,” the AMA said in a statement to Fortune.
“As such, we are pleased that the FDA is taking a step forward with a comprehensive review of medical product safety and has announced its intent to issue a medical device safety guidance report by March 31, 2021.”