At the start of the pandemic (March 2020), many elective procedures, as high as 50%, were cancelled or postponed. However, an analysis of the figures by GlobalData reveals that the general surgery devices market persevered despite these challenges, and from January through September 2021 the market was not negatively affected.
“The general surgery devices market is tightly correlated with elective procedure volumes. In 2021, the scale of elective procedure cancellations during the substantial COVID-19 surges had been much more limited than originally implemented in March 2020, which explains why the devices market remained resilient,” states Brian Hicks, senior analyst of medical devices at GlobalData in a news release. “Unlike before, policies regarding elective procedure cancellations were more often made at the individual hospital or hospital system levels, thus enabling relatively unaffected medical facilities to continue their procedures. Also, as many important lessons were learned from the initial wave of the pandemic, the front-end and back-end operations of hospital systems had significantly improved. These include improved patient triaging, performing important ambulatory surgeries that would not take away critical hospital bed capacities, and acquiring key supplies like personal protective equipment and COVID-19 tests.”
Although the general surgery devices market performed well last year, the omicron variant could pose a threat, as it could result in the cancellation of elective surgeries once again. “Despite many instances of local and regional cancellations of elective surgeries already happening due to the Omicron variant, the general surgery devices market is likely to continue and maintain the current level, if not grow even more,” says Hicks. “This is because the hospitalization rates from this variant remain low so far, and improved hospital operations with increased supplies will enable elective procedure volumes to sustain at current levels.”