Joachim Schaefer

Coming This Fall: World’s Largest MedTech Event

By Joachim Schäfer
Joachim Schaefer

Held in November, the COMPAMED and MEDICA trade fair will showcase futuristic as well as tried-and-true medical technologies.

Medical technology is a high-growth, exciting global industry. Advances in diagnostic and therapeutic procedures continue, and the European Patent Office has recorded more patent applications related to the medical technology than from any other sector. Digital transformation is well underway, and miniaturized components are enabling better handling and easier product application.

In just two months, medtech service providers and their suppliers will gather in Düsseldorf, Germany at COMPAMED to present their full range of capabilities and expertise, and collaborate with current and potential new customers. The event has been held concurrently with the world’s largest medical trade fair, MEDICA, for 25 years, and will take place from November 13–16, 2017. With more than 750 exhibitors, the event provides attendees with access to futuristic technology that has the potential to be transformed into reality today. In many instances, suppliers present their ideas at the event to lay the foundations for product development in the medical sector.

A look back: Integrated, Digital Devices Among Top Technologies at MEDICA 2016A key example is in diagnostic applications for point-of-care testing. The equipment must function reliably and automatically for the benefits to be fully realized. Samples must be taken for analysis in precisely defined quantities, and then processed and tested. Drugs must be adapted and dosed based on specific patient disease. Here, microfluidic systems play an important role—the development of tiny, complex components provides the necessary basis for progress in the field of lab-on-a-chip technology. Just a few years ago, a number of illnesses could be diagnosed only with the aid of complex laboratory analyses; now they can be detected with the help of credit card-sized mini laboratories, and exhibitors at the COMPAMED trade fair are driving these changes.

Innovation in wearables applications should also be mentioned. In this billion-dollar market, the most well known examples are sports watches and fitness wristbands. But microcomputers for medical applications (i.e., monitoring vital signs or implant function) are rapidly developing. Whether it’s wireless modules for sharing data, delicate sensors and servos, or powerful energy supplies that fit into tiny spaces, these solutions will be presented at COMPAMED 2017 and discussed at the two integrated specialist forums.

Another big COMPAMED theme is raw materials and materials. For the specialist raw material providers, foam isn’t just foam—our attendees learn this at COMPAMED. New varieties (based on polyurethane) are reaching milestones in wound care, exhibiting a high capacity for fluid retention and fluid containment, which makes them suited for use in modern wound dressings. Another benefit of this application is that when dressings are changed, the foam can be removed from the wound easily, without causing pain.

In the area of coatings, specialists know that even a few micrometers can have a significant impact on the functional characteristics of a medical product. This applies to any application, such as catheters or stents, that is used inside the body. Biocompatibility is a factor, but ensuring minimal friction is also a priority.

The Value-Added MedTech Chain

The product range at COMPAMED (located in Halls 8a and 8b) includes the following key categories: Components for medical technology (electronics, components, hoses, filters, pumps, and valves, among other items), materials/ substances, micro- and nanotechnology, made-to-order manufacturing, electronic manufacturing services (EMS), complex manufacturing and equipment partnerships (e.g. OEM – Original Equipment Manufacturers) as well as packaging and services.

In conjunction with MEDICA 2017, COMPAMED will cover the entire medtech supply chain, from individual components to measuring techniques and quality testing to sterile, packed end products.

Two forums will focus on relevant medtech supplier trends: The COMPAMED High-Tech Forum (Hall 8a) presented by the IVAM association for microtechnology will focus on microsystem technology, nanotechnology, production technology and process control. The content will center on smart sensor solutions, printed electronics, microfluidics and innovative laser and photonics applications. The Countries session on attractive markets will focus on France.

At the COMPAMED Suppliers Forum, organized by DeviceMed (Hall 8b), specialists, leading international companies and organizations will discuss current developments in the entire medical technology process chain. This year’s key focal topics include: Digitalization (mobile health, medical apps, medical industry 4.0), wearables, 3-D printing and regulations.

One ticket provides admission to both COMPAMED and MEDICA.

Information about COMPAMED 2017

Information about MEDICA 2017