• Ireland emerges as ‘a strategic hub’ for MedTech innovation, providing the stability, talent and collaborative ecosystem needed to meet today’s global challenges.
  • The next five years will be critical as MedTech companies meet global demand for innovative medical devices and address the opportunities and challenges around transformation to future-proof their operations. 
In a year marked by significant MedTech advancement, IDA Ireland, the national development agency responsible for attracting foreign investment to the country, has announced the release of its comprehensive MedTech whitepaper entitled Where next for MedTech – Key considerations for the factory of the future. It explores the trajectory of the MedTech industry, offering insights into the opportunities and challenges which lie ahead.

With insights gathered from diverse industry experts – including World Economic Forum (WEF) Lighthouse companies DePuy and Janssen along with Bausch and Lomb, Baxter Healthcare and Cook Medical, to name a few – the whitepaper emphasises the continued acceleration of technology disruption and the opportunity for MedTech companies to embrace digitalisation and transformation to remain agile, resilient and sustainable in a world of uncertainty and complexity.

Rachel Shelly, Global Head of Life Sciences at IDA Ireland, said: “The global MedTech sector is absolutely committed to saving lives and enhancing patient’s quality of life. This demands a continuous focus on innovation, requiring companies not only keep pace with evolving patient needs but also new technologies. World leading companies need to be flexible and agile to adapt quickly to emerging global trends and challenges in order to remain competitive.”

The whitepaper outlines how Ireland has built its reputation as an exemplar for MedTech advancement, offering an ecosystem that encompasses innovation, focuses on talent, and is committed to supporting client sustainability and digital transformation. One example of this is Digital Manufacturing Ireland (DMI), a newly launched national centre of excellence established by the Irish Government to assist Irish-based manufacturers in rapidly adopting digital technologies to transform their value chains.   

One such initiative within DMI is the Visual Cognitive Manufacturing Group (VCMG), where sixty organisations have united to promote the extensive implementation of vision technology. Domhnall Carroll, CEO of DMI explains that the VCMG has identified twelve challenge areas, and cross-industry teams are currently collaborating on developing solutions. “The synergy between manufacturing companies, technology firms, academia and the DMI team ensures that all the necessary components for a successful outcome are readily available, fostering a cohesive and effective collaborative environment.”  

The centralisation of commercial business services in Ireland is outlined in the whitepaper and contributes to operational efficiencies and economies of scale by tapping into deep and diverse talent pools located there.    

Going beyond talent, Ireland fosters collaboration with diverse educational institutions, research centres and supply chain partners, creating an environment conducive to world-class research and development. Ireland’s collaborative networks and partnerships between industry and academia can provide the foundations needed to support companies through transformation and digitalisation.  Once example cited is at Boston Scientific in Galway.  Michael Murphy at Boston Scientific says collaboration with universities is key. He says: “The company is working with universities in the West of Ireland to help increase the knowledge base and shape the courses that will generate the next wave of technical skills coming into the sector.”

Positioned as a globally recognised MedTech centre of excellence, Ireland emerges as a strategic location in the report, offering essential stability, talent, and an ecosystem crucial for helping companies drive competitiveness and innovation towards the next level. 

As the MedTech industry continues to transform, Ireland's role as a strategic partner solidifies, promising a landscape where companies can flourish, innovate, and meaningfully contribute to the wellbeing of individuals worldwide.

The full report ‘Where next for MedTech – Key considerations for the factory of the future’ is available here