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Medical Technology

The UK is the third largest market for medical technology in Europe, worth a staggering £7.6 billion and with approximately 3,700 companies in this sector, employing approximately 115,000 people, including the highest number of skilled engineers and researchers in Europe.

 

There is a significant focus on single-use technology, orthopaedic devices and in vitro diagnostics. The service and supply chain for medical technologies provides essential support, including design, manufacturing and regulatory expertise. The fastest growing segments of the UK industry by revenue are medical imaging, in vitro diagnostics and drug delivery and, by employment, digital health, drug delivery and single-use technology.

 

The UK is home to the globally respected regulator, the Medicines & Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency, and its dedicated Innovation Office. This helps MedTech organisations to navigate the regulatory processes, and frequently processes clinical investigations in 60 days.

Genomics Plc: A UK Success Story

Diagnostics

Companies in the region include:

Abbott Diabetes Care, a global leader in the glucose monitoring market, which grew out of the acquisition of the Oxford University spin-out company, Medisense and now produces over 2 billion glucose test strips annually at its production facility in Witney, Oxfordshire.
Nanopore Technologies, a second Oxford University spin-out, which has developed the world’s first and only nanopore DNA sequencer, the MinION. The company aims to become the world’s leading producer of equipment to decode the DNA of any organism, from people to viruses, and in applications from medical diagnosis to food safety.
Johnson & Johnson’s Lifescan, one of the leading manufacturers of blood glucose monitoring systems throughout the world, which has a base in Buckinghamshire.

Medical Devices

The region is also the chosen location for many medical device companies with operations across the range of R&D, sales and service and manufacturing, including:

 

Becton Dickinson, a US owned global medical device company which has demonstrated its commitment to the Thames Valley by consolidating its Oxford and Basingstoke sites in new premises at Winnersh Triangle, near Reading.
Owen Mumford, headquartered in Woodstock, Oxfordshire, a global industry leader in medical device design and manufacturing, specialising in self-injection and blood sampling devices.

Digital Health

The Thames Valley has a strong digital health cluster, with particular concentrations of activity around Oxford and Reading, where there is a large pool of tech talent, including app developers and data analytics experts.

Many of these companies in Oxfordshire are spin-outs from research laboratories. The Institute for Biomedical Engineering (IBME) at the University of Oxford has spun out ten companies in the last seven years, several of which are in the digital health sector. Such tech-led companies are a key attraction for larger organisations looking for collaborations.
The University of Reading, which has a world-class reputation for teaching, research and enterprise, is participating, through its Department of Engineering, in a large interdisciplinary research collaboration to develop the next generation of telecare. This collaboration, known as Sphere (Sensor Platform for Healthcare in a Residential Environment), aims to develop a digital healthcare assistant in the home, with Reading leading on the development of passive sensors.