Will COVID-19 Permanently Alter the Surgical Products Market? A Conversation with Tom O’Brien, Ethicon Endomechanical

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COVID-19 devastated elective surgery procedure volumes in the first half of 2020. Although hospitals have bounced back sooner than expected, surgical capacity remains strained. Returning to pre-pandemic levels is likely to be a multi-year challenge, according to Tom O’Brien, who says the emphasis now is on safety, efficiency, and cost-control. Ethicon is relying on real-world data to help make the case for its surgical devices.

COVID-19 has taken a toll on healthcare providers, and hospitals that rely on elective surgeries to bring in much needed revenue have been particularly hard-hit. As a result, medical device companies that supply surgical products are also feeling the pain; but some are rising to the opportunity and are taking specific measures to help their customers address the current elective surgery backlog. (See “Navigating Beyond COVID-19: What Device Companies Can Do to Survive and Thrive,” MedTech Strategist, May 21, 2020.)

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