The joint replacement market in South Africa is set to experience continued growth in the medium to long term, driven by an ageing population that is prone to cartilage degeneration and bone fractures. The introduction of innovative products with enhanced durability and longevity as well as safer operation techniques is further boosting growth in this market.
"The anticipated National Health Insurance (NHI) will also have an impact on the industry, as it is likely to control prices," notes Frost & Sullivan Analyst Ishe Zingoni. "Additionally, the government is planning to form a regulatory authority for medical devices to reduce anti-competitive behaviour."
New analysis from Frost & Sullivan (http://www.medicaldevices.frost.com), South African Joint Replacements Market, finds that the market earned revenues of $61.5 million in 2009 and estimates this to reach $94.9 million in 2016. The joint replacement market is divided into the following segments: hip replacements, knee replacements and upper extremities replacements.
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"While older patients remain the largest end-users of joint replacements, better joint replacement techniques have led to a change in the patient age-profile, with younger patients increasingly undergoing arthroplasty operations," says Zingoni. "Surgeons are more confident about performing such surgeries on younger patients due to the enhanced products and surgical techniques available."
However, a problem for new participants in the South African market is the high barriers to entry. Established companies have a strong portfolio of products and existing clients are generally brand loyal. Another issue is the lack of regulatory and industry approval processes to participants in this market.
"The high cost associated with a joint replacement procedure restrains the growth of this market, especially in the public sector," explains Zingoni. "Medical schemes do not cover the total cost of these operations, resulting in a major reliance on out-of-pocket payments."
The most significant future opportunity for joint replacement manufacturers and suppliers lies within the public sector – by working closely with the government and medical institutions in effectively training surgeons and nurses.
"To combat the restraint of the general lack of skills within the South African healthcare industry, the government should increase initiatives undertaking the training for doctors and nurses," concludes Zingoni. "Additionally, participation in this process by companies – by promoting information on orthopaedic surgeries amongst medical students – will lead to the development of a larger orthopaedic specialist pool in the country."
South African Joint Replacements Market is part of the Medical Devices Growth Partnership Services programme, which also includes research in the following markets: Strategic Analysis of Medical Imaging Devices in Kenya, Strategic Analysis of Medical Imaging devices In Ghana and Nigeria, Strategic Analysis of the Healthcare Industry in Kenya, Strategic Analysis of the Healthcare Industry in Tanzania, and The medical Insurance Markets in sub-Sahara Africa. All research services included in subscriptions provide detailed market opportunities and industry trends that have been evaluated following extensive interviews with market participants.