As medical device manufacturers look to automate their packaging operations, they must weigh capital equipment costs, production speeds and floorspace requirements or limitations.
Given the life-saving and life-sustaining nature of pharmaceuticals and medical devices, packaging plays significant roles in maintaining product quality and promoting safe and effective use. And the size of these industries is significant, too. Global demand for pharma packaging is expected to grow 6.5% each year to reach more than $100 billion in 2019, reports research firm Freedonia Group; U.S. demand alone is predicted to hit $22.1 billion by 2018. Freedonia also predicts global demand for medical device packaging to grow 5.9% annually to $25.7 billion in 2017.
Traditionally very distinct markets, pharmaceutical and medical device technologies are converging. Freedonia points out drug delivery is "the fastest expanding group of disposable medical supplies," expected to reach $13.4 billion in 2018 in the United States, thanks to "minimally invasive delivery of parenteral medicines, inhalation therapies," and more.
As engineers and designers in both industries work to develop user-friendly packaging and drug-delivery devices, they must also address demands to lower the overall cost of healthcare. Pharmaceutical & Medical Packaging News covers advancements that help packaging engineers control costs while maintaining product and package quality, remedy issues that can lead to product recalls, advance product identification strategies to meet serialization and Unique Device Identification rules, improve user experiences with packaging, and more. Advances in blisters, bottles, prefilled syringes, bags and pouches, thermoformed trays, form-fill-seal, automation, cartons, labels, desiccants, bar coding, filling, sealing, automation, testing, and more are featured.
PMP News also examines potential solutions to the risks these life-saving products face in the supply chain, such as extreme temperatures, physical damage, theft, counterfeiting, diversion, and tampering.