A new market research report, "Infection Control Market – Global Forecast to 2017," indicates that the overall infection control market will grow at a steady pace of around 6 percent and will reach $14.0 billion by 2017 from $10.5 billion in 2012.
Sterilization and disinfection are essential components of infection-control procedures. There has been a surge of cleaning standards and mounting pressure for sterilized medical devices and disinfection in hospitals and clinics, which has triggered the growth of the medical sterilization and disinfection market. With an increase in aging population across the globe and a demand for healthcare services, change in the healthcare reimbursement policies is pushing the providers of sterilization and disinfection to improve their operations by providing high-quality service at lower costs. These factors are expected to propel the growth of this market, according to the report.
With the introduction of technically enhanced instruments in the market like endoscopes and analyzers, there has been an increased need for advanced sterilizers that are compatible with the same. This has brought about a drastic shift from steam sterilizers to low temperature sterilizers with its wide range of technologies such as ethylene oxide (EtO), vaporized hydrogen peroxide (VHP), hydrogen peroxide gas plasma, and ozone gas based sterilization.
The report also studies the sterilization services market, which includes healthcare solutions, hospital sterilization services, and applied sterilization technologies. This market, too, has witnessed a rise in demand. Contract sterilization services, in particular, is a common trend due to stringent regulatory requirements imposed by regulatory agencies like International Organization for Standardization (ISO) and Association for the Advancement of Medical Instrumentation (AAMI). According to the report, original equipment manufacturers (OEMs), hence, prefer outsourcing, as it reduces costs on sterilizing and disinfecting equipment in-house by focusing on their other business core competencies. However, in the near future, in-house sterilization is expected to give healthy competition to contract sterilization services mainly due to the advent of hydrogen gas plasma and vapor hydrogen peroxide that are preferred to be used in-house. It also offers better quality assurance with just-in-time facility for sterilized products.
Gamma and E-beam types of sterilization services are poised to have better growth over EtO in the near future due to their wider application with respect to sterilization of food, pharmaceutical, medical devices, life sciences, and cosmetic products.
Along with sterilization, cleaning and sanitation are also important activities carried out in healthcare, food, and pharmaceutical industry. The hand disinfectant market is the fastest growing segment as hands are considered to be the primary cause of cross-infection. The demand for sanitizing and preservative disinfectants in food industry is also increasing due to high risks associated with foodborne pathogens along with other bacterial and viral food related infections. Increased focus on hygiene and spread of infections are the driving forces for disinfectants in the all the sectors. The endoscope reprocessing market is anticipated to show healthy growth in the near future due to continued instrument development and increasing minimally invasive surgery procedures.
Riding on these factors, along with increasing usage of single-use technology products such as medical non-wovens and face masks, the global disinfection market is expected to grow at a CAGR of more than 5.0 percent from 2012 to 2017.
North America constitutes the largest share to the infection control market, followed by Europe, Asia, and RoW. The rise in number of chronic diseases, pandemic diseases such as H1N1 and aging population has enhanced the growth of this market. Cost-containment issues have also led to the growth of the services sterilization market. The lack of government funds, however, has led to a decrease in innovation and enhancement of current technologies used for sterilization and disinfection. The Asian market is expected to display favorable growth in the coming years primarily due to rise in health awareness, growth of aging population, increase in number of surgical procedures, and growth in per capita income.
The major players in the sterilization equipment market are Steris Corporation (U.S.), Getinge AB (Sweden), Advanced Sterilization Products (U.S.), and Belimed (Switzerland). Key players in the contract sterilization services market are Synergy Health (U.K.) Steris Isomedix (U.S.), Sterigenics (U.S.), Medivators (U.S.), and Nordion (Canada). The disinfection market is dominated by Medivators, Cardinal Health (U.S.) and Kimberly-Clark (U.S.) along with the likes of Getinge, Steris, ASP, 3M (U.S.) and Belimed (Switzerland).