There is a promising outlook for the Australian manufacturing industry with the sector expanding for a second consecutive month in August 2015. According to the Australian Industry Groups manufacturing performance index, the industry has seen an “increas[e] of 1.3 points to 51.7 points, indicating a faster pace of expansion.”
Positivity in individual sectors has assisted the manufacturing industry, in particular, the medical manufacturing industry. In recent reports, the sector has seen improved results, with steady growth over the last few years.
According to Daniel J. Meckstroth, Ph.D., Vice President and Chief Economist for the Manufacturers Alliance for Productivity and Innovation (MAPI), “medical equipment production is forecast to increase [by] 6% in 2015, 8% in 2016, and 4% in 2017.”
Surgical appliances and supplies production experienced moderate growth in the three months ending October 2014. Meckstroth said, the reason for this growth is because of an aging population.
“…an aging population has increased the demand for medical care, including medical supplies and equipment. In addition, manufacturing plants are receiving significant investment in machinery and structures. The pick up in manufacturing production will underpin an acceleration in materials production,” he says.
The Medical Technology Association of Australia (MTAA) reported that, “globally the medical technology industry is set to grow at a compound rate of 4.5% and achieve sales of US$455 billion by 2018.
Innovation in Medical Manufacturing: 3D Printing – Creating Pills for Epilepsy
A US pharmaceutical company, Aprecia, has created a pill to help sufferers of epilepsy. The new pill called Spritam is manufactured using 3D printing and is capable of holding high dosages, eliminating the number of pills patients will have to take.
The article by Springwise says, “…the innovation could enable the production of drugs to move out of distant factories and into hospitals, where doctors or pharmacists could print each patient’s dosage individually. But much more likely is that Aprecia and other pharmaceuticals will develop more medicines that are enhanced by the 3D printing process, but leave the infrastructure of the industry unchanged by manufacturing in factories.”
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