Today’s use cases include transporting medicine, surgery assistance, social and therapeutic applications and pharmacy automation, among others.

Health orgs set to invest $7 billion in robotics in AsiaPac, IDC says

By Nathan Eddy
09:08 AM
surgical robot

Healthcare providers' spending on robotics in Asia/Pacific (excluding Japan) reached $3.73 billion in 2019 and forecasted to top $7 billion by 2022, according to a report from IDC Healthcare Insights.

WHY IT MATTERS

The Robotics in Healthcare-Benefits and Opportunities report noted that robots embedded with artificial intelligence (AI) would revolutionize the future of healthcare.

Use cases include medical transportation robots, surgery assistance, companion and social robots for therapeutic applications, waste disposal robots and pharmacy automation robots.

Machines equipped with deep learning and AI will also be able to gather and process data faster, and are expected to take over pattern-based diagnosis in pathology and radiology.

THE BIGGER TREND

A 2016 report from Tractica forecast healthcare robots would top 10,500 units per year by 2021, with more than 38,400 cumulative units shipped during that period.

As the technology matures, robotics will result in value-based health system, the report projects, noting that robotics embedded with AI would not threat to physicians, but would instead improve efficiency in their respective fields of work.

“Robotics in healthcare must be welcomed as an essential future,” Manoj Vallikkat, research manager at IDC Asia/Pacific Healthcare Insights, said in a statement. “The effective adoption of robotics will augment physician efficiency, eliminate medical errors, plug care gaps, and enable bigger patient volume to access high-precision care delivery."

Vallikkat added that reducing healthcare costs while improving quality are necessary for treating larger numbers of people.

“As the region faces multiple challenges, better reinvention will take place as part of a tactical approach. All these reinventions will be built on the technological platform, with robotics expected to play a significant role.”

WHAT IT MEANS AROUND THE GLOBE

According to a January report from BIS Research, North America is currently the leading contributor to the global healthcare robotics market, valued at $3.51 billion in 2017.

Aging populations and established healthcare infrastructure are driving the growth of the healthcare robotics market in North America, and the report noted the Europe region is expected to grow at an impressive growth rate, during the period from 2018 to 2023.

While surgical robots are currently the largest application market and will lead in terms of unit shipments during the forecast period, Tractica anticipated that they will be eclipsed by exoskeletons and prosthetics by the end of the period.

Nathan Eddy is a healthcare and technology freelancer based in Berlin.

Email the writer: nathaneddy@gmail.com

Twitter: @dropdeaded209

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