The applications using semiconductors in the medical industry continues to advance with more connectivity, smaller form factors, and higher performance. This market categorically should be growing much faster than other commercial markets, but there are several factors that impact this segment which has curtailed investment by the service providers for new technology, including public policy and skyrocketing cost. Nevertheless, the market is on track this year for growth as innovation and technology advancements help curb costs for consumers and healthcare providers alike.
The global estimate for all spending on healthcare is an enormous $6.5 trillion. Demand for services and products is advancing at a double digit rate in underdeveloped regions and in the developed countries, additions to the insured base of consumers is climbing. Premiums are higher for the consumer due to mandated insurance coverage. Health care providers are saddled with higher costs as well.
For some time now, solutions to this issue have been proposed including consumer-sided intervention where consumers are made more aware of costs and therefore less likely to overuse services, which has been the case due to the low out of pocket expense in the past. However, since the majority of healthcare expense is for sicker patients, consumer demand-driven service costs has largely remained unchanged. Technology innovation is one of the ways costs can be curtailed.
The market for medical technology devices is expected to reach nearly $240 billion in 2016 and this market is growing at a compound annual growth rate of 11 percent per year. Portability and remote monitoring systems continue to be the fastest growing design trend in the medical devices market. By providing health professionals with applications that can be used by the consumer at home and in the field, greatly cuts down on costs. Advances in design where conventional devices are now equipped with touchscreen technology and wireless connectivity enable consumers to monitor conditions without being tethered to the doctor’s office or hospital.
The opportunity for handheld wireless monitoring devices remains high. Both manufacturers and component suppliers are taking steps to improve both performance and cost-effectiveness of increasingly miniaturized, high precision portable devices while at the same time, making them easier to use. More importantly is the impact of IoT and cloud computing that has benefitted the medical industry recently.
Medical Electronics Market Research shows that all of this growth greatly benefits medical semiconductor suppliers. Medical applications require low power, precision products that are highly integrated and support multiple wireless and wired communications standards. All of this technology will help reduce costs over time as consumers are monitored more often remotely and healthcare providers are unburdened partially from the enormous task of recording data and maintaining efficient medical records.