The US medical supplies and devices manufacturing industry includes about 11,000 companies with combined annual revenue of about $85 billion. Major companies include Baxter International, Boston Scientific, Johnson & Johnson, and Medtronic. The industry is concentrated: the 50 largest companies account for about 60 percent of revenue.
Medical supply and device manufacturers produce surgical, ophthalmic, and dental instruments and supplies used in the medical field. The industry doesn't include the manufacture of x-ray or electromedical equipment and devices, such as ultrasound equipment, pacemakers, and electrocardiographs.
Demand is driven by population demographics and advances in medical knowledge and technology. The profitability of individual companies depends on the ability to develop superior products. Large companies have economies of scale in manufacturing and R&D. Small companies can compete successfully by specializing in a particular market segment, or through technical innovation.
PRODUCTS, OPERATIONS & TECHNOLOGY
Major products include surgical and medical instruments (about 45 percent of industry revenue), such as syringes, hypodermic needles, and catheters, and surgical appliances and supplies (about 40 percent), such as sutures, surgical dressings, and orthopedic devices. Other sources of revenue include lab equipment and furniture (centrifuges, scales, operating tables, hospital beds); ophthalmic goods (prescription glasses, contact lenses); diagnostic and anesthetic equipment; and dental equipment and supplies.
Syringes are typically produced in assembly lines. The basic stages include needle formulation, plastic component molding, piece assembly, packaging, labeling, and shipping. Needles are produced from molten steel drawn through a die....