How Medical Devices Helps Prolong Lives of Patients

Medical devices are essential so that the prevention, diagnosis, treatment, and rehabilitation of diseases and ailments are safe and effective. Medical devices are necessary to meet global health needs and can be used by health personnel, patients or other people in different settings, such as hospitals, dispensaries or their own home for preventive, diagnostic, therapeutic or rehabilitation purposes.

There are a series of data and figures that must be taken into account when talking about medical devices.

  • Medical devices range from a simple thermometer to the most sophisticated and expensive diagnostic imaging equipment.
  • It is estimated that there are 1.5 million different medical devices with more than 10 000 general types.
  • Majority of the people in the world today doesn’t have sufficient access to safe and appropriate medical devices in their health systems.
  • Nearly two-thirds of low-income countries don’t have a national health technology policy capable of ensuring effective use of resources through appropriate planning, evaluation, procurement and management of medical devices.
  • Medical devices help save or prolong life. As examples, the anesthesia equipment and the surgical instruments used in the operations, the radiotherapy units for the treatment of cancer or the incubators needed by the premature new-borns.

What Adequate Medical Device can do for Patients

  • Medical devices improve the quality of life, as with glasses, which improve vision; prostheses, which compensate for the loss of a limb, or hemodialyzers, which replace renal function.
  • The correct regulation of medical devices guarantees access to high quality and effective products
  • It ensures benefits to public health and the safety of patients, health workers, and communities.
  • It restricts the use of those products that are not safe or that have limited clinical use.

There’s a need to establish post-marketing surveillance programs in addition to the challenge of providing good quality services and treatments based on cost-effective medical devices.

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