7 Trends in the Medical Device Industry for 2023
Companies in the medical device industry continuously change and adapt through the development of new products and technologies. MedTech companies must also react to changing regulations, market conditions, and customer/patient expectations. What are the trends that are most prevalent in the industry as we move into 2023? Here are seven you should look out for.
Continued Growth in the Use of Minimally Invasive Medical Devices
Minimally invasive medical devices have transformed healthcare across the board, with the positive impacts being felt by patients, clinicians, and providers. The trend to increase the use of minimally invasive devices is set to continue through 2023 and beyond.
Products in this part of the MedTech industry are also becoming more advanced, leading to even further reductions in patient trauma, recovery times, and the cost of healthcare.
Medical Devices Are Getting Smaller and Smarter
Advances in the industry are leading to the development of increasingly smaller and smarter medical devices. This includes advances in materials, manufacturing techniques, sensors, and other emerging technologies. Many medical device products now combine multiple technologies, and robotics are becoming increasingly important in healthcare settings.
In areas like implants, robotics, and sensors, we are only at the start of what will become possible in the future, even though these technologies have been around for many years. This makes it an exciting time for the medical device industry, the wider healthcare sector, and patients.
Continued Moves Towards Mass Customization
Mass manufacturing is the norm in the life sciences sector. However, some of the most exciting R&D work currently taking place is in the field of personalized healthcare. This move towards personalized healthcare will result in medical device companies transforming from a mass manufacturing approach to mass customization.
Personalized implants are a good example, where implants are tailored for each individual patient.
Adapting to the Evolving Regulatory Landscape
The medical device regulatory landscape constantly evolves, but the pace of change has increased in recent years. One of the drivers for this is the introduction of the new EU MDR (Medical Device Regulations). The MDR and other regulatory changes are resulting in medical device industry leaders re-evaluating priorities in areas such as R&D, product design, and target market prioritization.
Only time will tell how this will develop, as the main focus for many in the industry, particularly those with products on sale in the EU, is compliance with the EU’s new MDR. That said, adapting to the evolving regulatory landscape will be a key feature for the industry in 2023.
Ongoing Emphasis on Supply Chain Resilience
Challenges in medical device supply chains that started during the Covid-19 pandemic have continued throughout 2022, leading to many in the industry placing a greater emphasis on enhancing supply chain resilience.
As we go into 2023, many of the issues that caused these initial supply chain problems continue to exist, including the availability of materials and labor. There are also now other issues that are impacting supply chain resilience in the MedTech industry, including the geopolitical situation in Europe and challenging economic conditions across the world.
As a result, there will be a continued emphasis on building and maintaining supply chain resilience in 2023 and beyond.
Addressing the Environmental Impact of the Medical Device Industry
Companies in the medical device industry continue to work to limit the impact their operations and products have on the environment. There remain challenges, however, as factors like patient safety, clinician wellbeing, and infection control can never be compromised.
Even with these challenges, there will be a continued focus on minimizing the impact of medical device operations in the coming years, including taking a holistic view of the entire product lifecycle.
Increasing Influence of Robotics and AI
We have already mentioned robotics in a previous point in relation to point-of-care robotic devices. AI (artificial intelligence) technologies are also being incorporated into medical device products, including wearable devices.
However, the influence of robotics and AI technologies isn’t limited to product development, as they are also becoming increasingly important in all parts of a medical device business. Manufacturing is a good example, where the use of robotics is becoming more advanced and AI technologies are being increasingly introduced.
Transforming healthcare is at the center of all the trends highlighted above, as well as other MedTech industry trends that did not make it onto this list. All parts of the sector have this aim to transform healthcare in common, from regulators to product design teams to OEMs to the clinicians who use the products we produce.
Understanding and staying on top of the trends will help you stay competitive, while also making it possible to take advantage of the opportunities that exist.