Technological Advances Offer Great Opportunity
August 2015

Technological Advances Offer Unprecedented Opportunity

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Technological-Advances-OfferThe patient monitoring equipment market is shifting focus towards clinical benefits with the buyers haveing realised the value of investing in clinical decision support tools, helping them in saving lives, writes Anshuman Ojha of Elets News Network (ENN)

Recent advancements in technology has developed a number of new aspects of clinical monitoring. With a growing ageing population and the prevalence of chronic diseases across the world, there is an urgent need to find new ways to improve patient outcomes, increase access to care, and reduce the cost of medical care. Advancements in sensor technology, the ubiquitous availability of cellular technology, and falling costs of embedded communication devices are opening up new channels for improving patient care and quality of life. Using seamless, continuous patient health monitoring, healthcare providers, insurance payers, and the government are looking to significantly alter how care is provided to patients, while reducing cost of care at the same time.

Market Dynamics

The global patient monitoring equipment market is expected to reach at US$ 21 billion by 2018, with a five-year compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 7.4 per cent. The North America segment, by far the largest patient monitoring equipment market, is expected to grow to US$ 9.1 billion by 2018, and register a CAGR of 7.1 per cent.

Increased private sector investments and expansion plans by corporate hospitals are leading to growth of the patient monitoring equipment market in India

Technological-Advances-Offer-1With growing demand from emerging economies of the world, the market is expected to witness a shift towards developing nations. The Asian market, the fastest growing regional segment overall, is growing at a significant 8.9 per cent CAGR. However, Asia, which was valued at US$ 2.7 billion in 2013, is expected to jump to US$ 4.2 billion by 2018, outperforming all other regions. Philips Healthcare, GE Healthcare, Nihon Kohden, Mindray are some of the major players catering the market of patient monitors.

In 2013, Philips Healthcare led the US, Europe, and Asia- Pacific patient monitoring market with total global market shares between 16 per cent and 22 per cent worldwide. In addition, the company was the global leader in the multi-parameter vital sign monitoring market with shares between 17 per cent and 42 per cent, according to a report published by iData Research.

Updated pacemakers, implantable cardioverter defibrillators (ICDs), multi-parameter vital sign monitors, electroencephalograms (EEG), electromyograms (EMG), cerebral oximeters and pulse oximetry, hemodynamic monitors are growing in use. The pulse oximetry-monitoring market alone is expected to exceed US$ 1 billion by 2020, according to a new report by iData Research. In addition, new products with smartphone integration and Bluetooth capabilities will further drive sales.

Remote Patient Monitoring: According to Kalorama Information, the global advanced patient monitoring market is currently worth about US$31.4 billion, inclusive of devices, peripherals, software, packaged services and other applications.

Advanced patient monitoring market has benefited from the demand to move to a more wireless and streamlined operation both within major health facilities and in the home treatment markets. These monitoring systems are focused on utilizing the technologies recently introduced to the healthcare field.

Advances in remote patient monitoring include: new peripherals; real-time audio and video for “face-to-face” interaction between clinicians and patients; wireless communication systems that “sort” the vast amount of data collected in order to put it into the context of a patient’s condition; portable and ambulatory monitors; web-based access to the patient record; systems that transfer data to an electronic medical record (EMR); and full-service outsourcing that includes a clinician to evaluate data and send a report to the attending physician.

ADVANTAGES OF REMOTE PATIENT MONITORING
 For Patients
  • Improved health outcomes and quality of life
  • Real-time support and interventions
  • Extension of care at home after discharge, helping to prevent emergencies and readmissions
  • Reduced hospital stays
 For Care Providers
  • Support the extension of clinical environments into a patient’s home post-discharge through remote monitoring
  • Access to increased frequency of patient health data
  • Ability to continue monitoring patient health, regardless of patient’s location, even when not at home
  • Support an increased level of accuracy for clinical monitoring readings, particularly readings that would otherwise be provided by the patient themselves
  • Increase the level of trust and reliance that physicians place in data. This is particularly important when there are a few outlying readings, which may potentially indicate an underlying problem, but which might be attributed to errors in measurement
  • Reduced costs from readmissions and reduced hospital stays

The global advanced patient monitoring market has continued its expansion in both the institutional and home segments of the health market with the United States and many European countries at the forefront of implementation. The advanced patient monitoring market includes products in the following segments: blood management and function monitors, cardiac event and function monitors, neurological event monitors, respiratory function monitors, and other advanced monitors.

Over the past few years, the number of cases of chronic diseases such as cardiovascular disease, diabetes and chronic respiratory diseases has increased, due to the growing population in developing nations. According to the World Diabetes Foundation, 80 per cent of the diabetic population is expected to come from low and middle income countries by 2025.

Technological-Advances-Offer-2Emerging economies such as India and China, with huge patient bases and an under-served market, are expected to act as potentially lucrative markets for remote patient monitoring equipment. An analysis from Transparency Market Research expects the global medical device connectivity market – wired hardware plus wireless hardware and software – will be worth US$ 33.5 billion by 2019. Though wired hardware accounts for 40 per cent of the market, wireless technology continues to grow as healthcare providers add Wi-Fi, Bluetooth and wireless medical telemetry services.

The global medical device connectivity market will be worth US$ 33.5 billion by 2019

Wireless technology has a wide range of applications in remote patient monitoring. Remote monitoring enables a patient to undergo hospital visits of reduced length, and have constant monitoring at home. This not only improves the quality of life for elderly and chronically ill patients, but also leads to a significant reduction in healthcare expenditure. Wireless remote patient monitoring can also provide continuous and real time data to physicians from remote locations such as the home, hospice, ambulance, or other outpatient settings, thereby offering the advantage of convenience to both physicians and patients, while hospitalization costs are massively reduced.

Indian Scenario

Indian patient monitoring equipment market is highly influenced by the economical status and technology advancement. The products range is highly segmented based on technology and price range.

Government has spent little on national healthcare, but increasing private-sector investments are resulting in more and better hospitals and clinics, with major hospital groups such as Fortis Healthcare and Apollo Hospitals announcing expansion plans in India. The addition of new medical facilities provides significant opportunities for growth in the patient monitoring equipment market in India, which is expected to grow from a value of US$ 85 million in 2012 to US$ 134 million 2019, at a CAGR of 7 per cent, according to a study by GBI Research.

The market for patient monitoring equipment in India is highly concentrated, with the four leading competitors controlling over 75 percent of the market. However, a large number of smaller competitors are gaining market share. The four major players are Nihon Kohden, Philips Healthcare, GE Healthcare, and Fukuda Denshi, and according to a report by iData Research, Nihon Kohden controls the largest share of pie among the four.

GROWTH DRIVERS
  •  Decrease in the physical size of monitoring equipment Enhanced utility, performance and sensitivity
  • Enhanced utility, performance and sensitivity
  • Usability and portability of devices
  • Increasing availability of remote/wireless patient monitoring equipment and systems

Remote patient monitoring and implantable patient monitors are areas of high growth potential that are gaining attention. Equipment specialised for diseases or patient conditions, such as glucose monitoring devices, cardiac and respiratory monitoring devices other than patient monitors, are some of the key opportunity areas that hold moderate to high growth potential for future growth of the patient monitoring equipment market.

Technological-Advances-Offer-3Technological Advancements

Patient monitoring technology is a growing niche within the industry, with big and small operations looking for their cut of the profits. A new device from a team of nurses, engineers and computer scientists takes the trend one step further, monitoring a patient’s health through a bandage.

As the New Scientist reports, scientists at the National Taiwan University in Taipei are developing Bioscope, a bandage-like system that tracks a hospital patient’s temperature, heart rat, movement and bodily noises and wirelessly transmits the data to a computer. Sensor modules are 3D printed onto the bandage, and can be swapped in and out by a nursing staff depending on each patient’s unique needs. The system includes a heart rate monitor that measures electrical activity at the skin surface, a contact thermometer that measures temperature, an accelerometer that monitors physical movement and a contact microphone that picks up on sound patterns from internal organs.

The global patient monitoring equipment market is expected to react at US$ 21 billion by 2018

Scientists hope that eventually the device could allow physicians to make diagnoses remotely and monitor patients once they’ve left the hospital, according to the New Scientist article. The team plans to present its Bioscope system at the UbiComp conference in Seattle, WA, in September 2015.

The innovation joins a host of other patient monitoring products under development. Earlier this month, the FDA cleared the first sensor to monitor heart rate, respiratory and movement in a chair. EarlySense’s Chair Sensor Solution is placed underneath a chair cushion and tracks a patient’s health without any attachment leads or cuffs. A new iOS device, Cue, allows consumers to test their vital signs at home with simple swabs of bodily fluids. The product consists of a small tabletop analyser and colour-coded cartridges that detect biomarkers such as testosterone, inflammation, vitamin D and fertility. Cue is being presold under an Investigation Device Exemption, but has not yet received full regulatory approval.

The Road Ahead

One of the key challenges includes enforcing regulations throughout hospitals in India. However healthcare access remains a top priority, it needs to be done without compromises in quality. Non-communicable disease burden is increasing and some of the diseases such as COPD do not require expert visits and can be effectively taken care by tele-monitoring and at home solutions. This provides a huge opportunity to take care delivery to home and can form the basis of future models of care delivery.

The medical technology industry in India needs to innovate in order to address the challenge of low penetration and meet the healthcare needs of all income segments. In a country like India, where resources are scarce but needs are high, solutions have to be affordable, reliable, resilient, easy to distribute, and easy to use. Companies need to squeeze costs so they can reach more customers, and consequently exploit economies of scale. Frugal approaches to innovation are particularly critical in the Indian medical technology industry to make modern care accessible, available, and affordable to all. Existing demand for medical technology in India is majorly from big cities. Innovation will help medical technology players create a new market in the lower income segments – primarily, smaller towns and rural areas, and leapfrog to the next level of growth.

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