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The importance of medical technology for IrelandMedical devices play a crucial role in the healthcare system in each stage from prevention to rehabilitation. It is important to note that medical devices range from thermometers or audiphones to highly specialised scanners or pacemakers.
Medical devices play a crucial role in the healthcare system in each stage from prevention to rehabilitation. It is important to note that medical devices range from thermometers or audiphones to highly specialised scanners or pacemakers.
Globally, the medical technology industry is estimated at £150-170bn. Some forecasters stated a growth of 10% over the next 5-6 years. This growth will be essentially driven by an aging population in need of treatment for chronicle deceases and the increase in the income level in developed and developing economies1.
According to Eucomed2, tthe medical devices industry employs 529,000 highly skilled workers in Europe. Surprisingly, only 20% of the companies are MNCs; small and medium enterprises accounts for 80% of the total.
In Ireland, the medical devices industry employs over 30,000 people in approximately 160 companies3. Ireland is home to 15 of the world's top 20 Medical Technologies companies and a proven location for HV Manufacturing and R&D. Exports from the sector came to approx €6 billion last year.
Recent figures released by the CSO have confirmed the strength of the industry. As shown in the table below, exports of Medical Devices and Pharmaceutical Products has grown 7.26% and 14.43% respectively.
Speaking at the Conference, Maria Ginnity, Head Enterprise Policy in Forfas, stressed the importance of innovation as a key factor in improving competitiveness and increasing export capacity.
Find out more about the conference and IMSTA here.
1- Strength and Opportunity - The landscape of the medical technology, medical biotechnology and industrial biotechnology sectors in the UK. Annual update – December 2010, HM Government http://www.bis.gov.uk/assets/biscore/business-sectors/docs/s/10-p90-strength-and-opportunity-bioscience-and-health-technology-sectors.pdf
2- Eucomed, About the Industry - http://www.eucomed.be/abouttheindustry.aspx
3- Enterprise Ireland Directory - http://www.enterprise-ireland.com/en/Source-a-Product-or-Service-from-Ireland/Sector-and-Company-Directories/Medical-Devices-Sector-Profile.pdf