US demand to rise 4.7% annually through 2018
US demand for infection prevention products and services will expand 4.7 percent annually to $24.2 billion in 2018. Gains will reflect the increasing adoption and enforcement of safeguards aimed at reducing the incidence of health careassociated infections (HAIs) in medical settings. The upgrading of quality control and quality assurance standards in life science research establishments, and pharmaceutical and medical device production facilities will also contribute to growth.
Protective apparel & textiles to remain largest product group
Based on revenues, protective apparel and textiles will remain the largest group of infection prevention supplies through 2018 and beyond. Expanded efforts by hospital and outpatient facilities to reduce the threat of air- and blood-borne pathogens in surgical and other patient procedures will promote the increasing use of high value-added, barrier enhanced gloves, drapes, gowns, face masks, and other apparel and textiles. Safetyenhanced medical devices will command the fastest growth in demand among infection prevention supplies as health care facilities pursue improved safety in blood collection, IV and urinary catheterization, injectable drug delivery, and invasive surgical procedures. This product group serves two critical areas of infection prevention: the reduction of HAIs and the protection of staff and patients from accidental needlesticks.
The upgrading of quality control and quality assurance standards for the reprocessing of surgical and medical instruments as well as for production of pharmaceuticals and medical devices will underlie a large, expanding US market for sterilization supplies. Based on uses in medical supply and device production and storage, sterile containers will lead demand. Nonwoven wrap and biological and chemical indicators will also continue to record sizable sales volumes due to performance advantages over alternative products. The battle against HAIs, coupled with upward trends in the volume of patient procedures and life science activities, will expand the US market for disinfectants. These consumables will benefit from the stricter enforcement of standards for staff and patient protection, and for facility and instrument cleaning.
Medical waste management to be dominant service
Convenience, cost efficiency, and regulatory compliance advantages will drive gains in the US market for infection prevention services through 2018. Medical waste management services will pace demand as government agencies continue to restrict onsite incineration and force hospitals and large outpatient facilities to use outside firms for medical waste collection and disposal. In addition, the market for contract medical waste disposal services will benefit from state and local government regulations mandating the special handling of infectious waste.
The infection prevention service segment, consisting of contract sterilization services, serves a more limited customer base and registers a much lower revenue volume. Nonetheless, this segment is projected to grow favorably. To avoid the extensive capital investment required to set up and operate in-house sterilization systems, a greater number of pharmaceutical medical device producers will rely on outside contractors for this function.