Market for Medical Plastics
As per the recent Market Research
carried out by “Frost & Sullivan”, USA, West European market for polymers in
medical devices will grow by an average of 8.6% a year from €602 million in 2011
to €1,075.4 million in 2018, boosted by the increasing replacement of other
materials by polymers in medical devices.
The research covered a range of
product segments including polyvinyl chloride (PVC), silicones, styrenes,
thermoplastic elastomers and engineering and high performance polymers such as
PEEK and PTFE.
As per Frost & Sullivan research
analyst Tridisha Goswami , “A rapidly greying population with its attendant
healthcare needs will have a positive impact on the medical devices market and,
by extension, on polymers used in such equipment reinforced by the uptake of
increasingly sophisticated equipment by the healthcare industry and the growing
importance of portable, impact-resistant medical devices that can be used in
Already, polymers with higher
chemical and impact resistance, superior mechanical and thermal properties have
become the material of choice for most medical applications like medical tubing,
wound care, adhesives and lubricants.
The healthcare industry is
exhibiting increased interest in miniaturisation, homecare and aesthetics.
Polymers which have exceptional durability, flexibility and strength, and which
can also be produced in a range of colours, meet such demands.
In comparison with other sectors,
such as automotive and construction, polymers in healthcare is a low-volume
market. However, according to the analysis, it offers opportunities for higher
margins and, moreover, is less tied to GDP growth.
“It has to be noted though that
governmental pressure to lower healthcare costs are likely to limit profit
margins of polymer suppliers,” cautioned Goswami. “The market is highly
regulated and product development is expensive and time consuming.”
Despite being low-volume, the
market is defined by high competition and innovation. Efforts to advance polymer
functionality and diversify the application base will help companies establish
their presence in the market.
“Competition is intense and
market participants have to diversify their product lines and be a one-stopsolution
for all healthcare material needs,” advised Goswami. “Manufacturers should focus
on developing novel, high quality products that meet the particular needs of
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