4 trends in medical device design you need to know

The following four trends in medical device design are important matters to consider for your next product:

Wearable Medical Devices
A hot trend with consumers is also growing in health care: wearables.

From smartwatches to fitness trackers, wearables are expected to deliver $20 billion in sales in 2016, according to research firm IHS. Of that, wearable medical devices will account for 30 percent of revenues, and projections show annual upticks in revenue.

Wearable medical devices aim to improve patient health through consistent monitoring, education and awareness.

They may be able to capture oxygen levels, monitor posture and read basal body temperature, monitor heart rate, show energy consumption and output, and monitor fluid intake, among many others.

Smaller Sizes are Convenient
Wearable medical devices design considerations must shift toward being smaller, which is challenging given the inherent complexity of medical devices.

As research firm Geneva Analytics notes that smartphone technology can provide a roadmap for medical devices.

Individual medical devices could have microprocessors; high-tech sensors to monitor patient data, plus intelligently capture, store or tether data through peer-to-peer communication software such as Bluetooth and WiFi; and be non-obtrusive for the end user.

The ‘Look’
Users — whether clinicians or patients — are seeing and experiencing sleek technology in their personal lives. Medical devices need to offer an aesthetically pleasing look.

According to industry research by Denmark creative firm WILDDESIGN, medical device design is shifting away from sterile diagnostic tools to something more comfortable in color and materials — similar to a household item.

Patient Experience
A positive patient experience is an increasingly vital element while technological advancements and design standards continually improve. Several finalists in the Medical Design Excellence Awards (MDEA) had devices designed with the patient experience in mind.

Some examples include a dental device that can make painful root canal procedures shorter, to a handheld device that replaces the jarring puff-of-air-in-your-eye for glaucoma test. A positive patient experience, whether it be pain reduction, shorter procedure times or stimulating a faster recovery process, enhances patient experience.

For an example of how NPI/Medical positively impacted the design of a urinary catheter created to make self-catheterization easier, read our case study.

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The value of DFM and early supplier involvement with NPI/Medical

Working with NPI/Medical gives you the key advantage of up-front DFM assistance to help guide your New Product Introduction.

Through our vertically integrated Process Engineering, Project Management and Quality Engineering teams, we offer solutions in the medical device, life sciences and healthcare segments.

Why Invest in DFM and Early Supplier Involvement with NPI/Medical?

  • Ensure proper product design, material selection, tool design, supply continuity, and long-term product quality.
  • Improved product performance.
  • Avoid significant increases on project and unit cost, reducing long-term cost of goods sold.
  • Ensure the proper manufacturing and technical support for the project.
  • Eliminate costly engineering changes and shorten overall project timing.
  • Allow for an advanced quality planning opportunity to be incorporated upfront.

Our engineering team is ready to tackle your next challenge.

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Join NPI/Medical at BIOMEDevice 2016 in San Jose

NPI/Medical will be exhibiting at BIOMEDevice 2016, which will be held Dec. 7-8 in San Jose, Calif.

The two-day event draws more than 2,600 industry professionals in biomed, medical devices and more, showcasing emerging trends and innovations that set the tone for the biomed industry.

Stop by booth #1321 at the San Jose Convention Center to say hi.

See you there!

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Continuous quality improvement measures show Westfall does ‘not accept the average

Maintaining stringent ISO 13485 standards is something we at NPI/Medical are laser focused on. In addition, fostering a culture of quality internally at NPI/Medical is viewed as an all-encompassing approach. Examples of achieving this culture include continuous employee training, optimizing processes, equipment upgrades, and implementing aggressive productivity measures throughout our facility.

One employee, Austin Giardino, has exemplified what it means to be a shining member of our Quality Assurance/ Process Engineering team through his recent accomplishments of becoming an ASQ-Certified Quality Technician and a Green Belt.

Our Quality Assurance/Process Engineering team has also made significant gains this year by adding three Green Belts (Giardino, Ryan Dulko and Kevin Black), one Six Sigma Black Belt (Luis Rojas) and one Lean Certification (Rob Fondry). In addition, Jason Roman successfully completed his GD&T training while John Bioski completed his Whittman-Battenfeld iPro Master courses in injection molding.

“NPI/Medical has an environment of promoting and fostering education,” Giordano said. “Our company challenges itself to not accept the average. The ongoing investment in continuous development and training is a win for our entire team at NPI/Medical, for which I am extremely thankful.”

Under the direction of Paul Nieves, NPI’s QA/Process Engineering Manager, the team can be proud of their accomplishments to support growth and development. These recent employee training endeavors speak to NPI/Medical’s commitment for continuous improvement and a consistent focus on delivering excellence to achieve superior customer satisfaction.

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CEO Randy Ahlm shares supply chain insight in Oct. issue of ‘Medical Design & Outsourcing’

Medical Design & Outsourcing magazine recently included NPI/Medical in its “Engineering 911” feature, focusing on optimizing supply chains and how the company does it for a major player in the medical device OEM space.

CEO Randy Ahlm’s bylined article — “A few ideas for improving supply chains” — appeared in MDO’s October issue in both print and online.

Here’s an excerpt:

Improving profits is every company’s goal while reducing costs is every company’s challenge. The improving profits part is almost easier: Introduce new products and expand operations into global markets. The drawback is that newer and longer supply chains produce upward cost pressures.

Recent supply chain improvements can provide relief from the cost pressures. One strategy is to shorten the supply chain by minimizing suppliers. The consolidation part is made easier when a supplier stands out by exceeding expectations and delivering on time, whether the product is shipped to forecast, or shipped on a demand-driven basis, without anticipated timelines.

Improving a supply chain requires finding suppliers with the capability to produce parts and procure others, and then assemble, decorate, and package assemblies for delivery. Validation for this statement comes from a senior-level procurement supplier at a top-10 medical device OEM. He recently remarked that his company no longer wants “a bunch of parts” shipped to them. His company wants assemblies and finished products.

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NPI/Medical to exhibit at Design-2-Part 2016 in Marlborough, Mass.

NPI/Medical will be exhibiting at Design-2-Part 2016, the region’s largest design and contract manufacturing show. The expo will take place Sept. 28-29 at the Royal Plaza Trade Center in Marlborough, Mass.

Design-2-Part’s show features exhibiting companies covering more than 300 manufacturing and service categories for the medical, plastics, and electronics industries.

NPI/Medical will be exhibiting at booth #331. Hope to see you there!

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Join us at the 2016 Colorado Life Science Innovation Forum in Denver

NPI/Medical will attend the Colorado BioScience Association’s 2016 Colorado Life Science Innovation Forum, which is committed to improving the state of the life science industry.

The forum, hosted by the Colorado BioScience Association, provides a venue for business leaders to discuss the most pressing issues shaping the life science industry.

The forum is scheduled for Friday, Aug. 26 in Denver, and will be hosted at the Hyatt Regency Convention, 650 15th Street. We will be at Booth #14.

Topics will include:

// The impact of patient input on R&D
// The future of personalized medicine
// Partnering to drive innovation
// Value-based care

The forum’s keynote speaker will be Mike Genau, Senior Vice President, America’s Region, Medtronic.

Hope to see you there!

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NPI/Medical announces sales partnership with Marketing Technologies

NPI/Medical is pleased to announce a sales representative partnership with Marketing Technologies, LLC. NPI/Medical, a leading provider of New Product Introductions within the medical device, healthcare and life sciences segments, established this partnership to expand the Ansonia, Conn.-based company’s reach in the western United States.

“I am very pleased to announce this strategic partnership,” said Randy Ahlm, NPI/Medical CEO. “Marketing Technologies is an ideal partner for NPI/Medical’s market expansion to the western United States. The addition of their team to NPI/Medical is in line with our commitment to grow our customer base in the medtech hotbeds of Colorado and Utah.”

Marketing Technologies has a “commitment to excellence along with their value proposition of providing complete service from prototype to production fits well within our business model,” Ahlm said.

“Their strong presence in medical devices fully compliments the broad range of New Product Introductions and solutions that we currently offer our customer base,” he said.

Mark McIntyre, Principal of Marketing Technologies, said the partnership matches up well.

“NPI/Medical’s portfolio of capabilities fits well within our expertise and we look forward to representing NPI/Medical to medical device and healthcare companies in the Rocky Mountain states,” McIntyre said.

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NPI/Medical to host city of Ansonia’s 2016 Economic & Business Forum

NPI/Medical will host the Ansonia Business & Economic Development Forum on Wednesday, June 29 from 7:30-9:30 a.m. The forum will take place at NPI/Medical’s headquarters, 401 Birmingham Boulevard in the Fountain Lake Industrial Park.

We are pleased to join with Ansonia Mayor David Cassetti and his economic development team in a discussion about the economic development initiatives currently underway in the city of Ansonia.

The program is a partnership between the Greater Valley Chamber of Commerce, the city of Ansonia and the Valley Association of Realtors.

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NPI/Medical announces prototype tooling partnership with Proto Labs®

What if you could talk to one person to help you with your prototype tooling needs and give you suggestions on how to make your design more efficient and cost effective? What if that same person would coordinate your project all the way to launch including ideas to lower your supply chain costs?

At NPI/Medical, we understand the need to accelerate the product launch and feel the frustration our customers have when they need to speak to multiple engineers, project managers and tooling designers as they go through each phase of the prototype tooling process. Our customers tell us they often have to “re-educate” as many as five or 10 different people at multiple tooling suppliers, wasting critical time. Our solution is simple: expand our prototype tool offerings so we can now can offer you parts in as little as seven days or “validatable” parts in an ISO 13485 clean room in four weeks.

We are pleased to announce a collaboration with Proto Labs that will allow us to do this. This new offering will become part of our DynaClass® Tooling offerings. DynaClass was created in 2012 as a way to simplify the tooling process and provide options for NPI/Medical’s customers.

“Prototype tooling means different things to different people,” said NPI/Medical President David Kelly. “Our DynaClass system clarifies it by breaking tooling down into classifications based on mold life, mold base and other key criteria. By adding the Proto Labs offering to our DynaClass® 5 program, we can deliver low- to moderate-cost parts in seven days or validatable parts in a steel tool in three to four weeks.”

Stop wasting time dealing with multiple prototype tooling suppliers. NPI/Medical can guide you through the process toward a successful launch.

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