Innovative medical devices will be required as population ages

Issue 29 – July 2011

Greater innovation will have to be seen in the development of medical devices and healthcare systems as the ageing population and other societal changes in Europe demand it, politicians have stated. A meeting of the Employment, Social Policy, Health and Consumer Affairs Council has debated a range of health issues and published its conclusions.

The talks in Luxembourg covered policies relating to the use of medical devices in health and social care, in areas such as prevention, diagnosis, treatment, and rehabilitation, to improve the lives of individuals in the region. 'Innovation in medical devices should contribute to the continued improvement of patient and user safety,' the Employment, Social Policy, Health and Consumer Affairs Council stated.

An estimated 18 000 small and medium-sized enterprises operate in the European medical device sector and the EU Council has stressed the need for legislation to take this into consideration, in addition to adapting to the 'needs of tomorrow'. In the UK, the Innovation Challenge has allocated grants to creative schemes aimed at improving the quality of healthcare delivery and patient services in the National Health Service.

Summarised from an article by Michelle Devonshire in the BSI Healthcare and Medical Devices Newsletter, June 2011.

Published in health.