Outpatient growth drives ultrasound equipment volumes
November 03, 2016
The global ultrasound imaging equipment market is estimated to have been worth $6.16 billion in 2015; an increase of 1.2% from 2014. This rate of growth is lower than previously forecast, which is primarily due to the impact of a strong US dollar and other foreign exchange fluctuations, which affected the sales of foreign US subsidiaries. The market also experienced a period of highly competitive pricing which lowered average sales prices (ASP), particularly in Latin America and Europe. For some vendors, this ASP erosion was further exacerbated by the effects of shifting foreign exchange rates. Stronger growth is predicted for 2016 because of new product launches from Carestream, Fukuda Denshi, Hitachi-Aloka, and VisualSonics (Fujifilm SonoSite), and because of increased volumes in point of care and obstetrics applications. On a unit volume basis, shipments were up by 4% over 2014. The results for 2016 are expected to be closer to a 5% increase. Growth in the market through 2020 is being driven by uptake of mid-range and high-end cart-based systems in both emerging and developed markets for use in traditional applications. Uptake will also be bolstered by further development of the use of compact ultrasound systems in point-of-care (POC) applications.