2017 will be a changeable and productive year for the medical devices industry, as aging populations, the need for cost-effective treatments and consistent innovation continue to drive growth, according to research and consulting firm GlobalData.
The company’s latest white paper states that as 2017 approaches, despite the medical devices landscape favoring large companies who can leverage economies of scale, the high-profile M&A scene will settle down. The shift to strategic M&A activities at a tuck-in level will continue, as medical companies start to reconsider their approach to dealing with execution and synergy capture.
Despite innovation and drivers in the industry, the year ahead will not be without its challenges and concerns. Small and start-up companies are particularly vulnerable to the problem of increasingly diminished venture capital availability, which can cause crippling delays to new product launches. Indeed, this lack of funding can adversely affect the broader industry by limiting growth and innovation.
On top of this, it will soon no longer be enough for medical device manufacturers to simply offer the best quality implant or most clinically successful instrumentation. Instead, companies will need to re-evaluate their offerings and include a range of tools tailored towards physicians and hospital groups, such as applications and services that help physicians monitor patient outcomes, guide hospitals towards cost savings and assist in improving clinical outcomes.
GlobalData believes that 2017 will also see healthcare insurance companies tapping into new applications of the Internet of Things. With the burgeoning number of wearable devices and increased pricing pressures in healthcare, insurance premiums will be determined by a patient’s lifestyle as recorded on a smartwatch in a usage-based insurance model.
With the climbing costs of healthcare services and shortages of healthcare facilities and labor, cost-effective home care devices will be even more in demand. Fueled by technological advances and increasing financial incentives, the number, range and complexity of home care medical devices are surging, indicative again of the changing technological landscape of medical devices.