Since the enactment of the long-term care insurance system in 2000, public interest in rehabilitation equipment, and thereby the number of users has increased. This trend further resulted into improvements in the function and design of such equipment, which greatly benefits the aged population and physically challenged to achieve greater independence and participate in society. Rehabilitation equipment is a re-usable aid which assists the patient with their daily activities.
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In the past decade, the market for these devices has expanded considerably due to government support and technological advancements to address the needs of the increasing geriatric and physically challenged population in developed countries with the purchasing power as well as need for rehabilitation equipment. However, high cost and maintenance expenses may hinder the growth of this market in developing and under-developed countries, which is otherwise estimated to be significant. This could be attributed to the entry of various government and private insurance players who cover various assistive devices under reimbursement plans, making them more affordable to consumers and enhancing the demand for them in the market. The combined effect of these factors is predicted to drive the rehabilitation equipment market during the forecast period.
The global market is segmented on the basis of product into the following categories: personal care aids, mobility devices, exercise equipment, respiratory & pressure care products, and other. The mobility devices segment, which is expected to register high growth in the near future, covers wheelchairs, scooters, and walking assistance devices. Wheelchairs are designed for physically challenged customers who face problems with mobility. The elderly and individuals with leg injuries, spinal cord injuries (SCIs), multiple sclerosis (MS), hemiplegia & other types of paralysis, cerebral palsy (CP), spinal bifida, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), lower limb amputees, and arthritis are major customers too. There are wheelchairs specially designed to perform in different infrastructural setups. Physically challenged sportspersons are also a major target segment for wheelchair manufacturers. Additionally, with advancements in technology, wheelchairs feature Bluetooth, Wi-Fi connectivity, and smart gadget access, which allow the users to lead a modern lifestyle.
By application, the global rehabilitation equipment market is divided into two groups: physiotherapy and occupational therapy. The former is anticipated to hold a major market share owing to the increasing need for it among the aging population. Human life expectancy has increased worldwide due to general health consciousness and advancements in medical science to deal with fatal diseases. The total world population in 2014 was beyond 700 billion and is anticipated to rise to 714 million in 2020.
In terms of end-user, the global rehabilitation equipment market is categorized into hospitals & clinics, ambulatory surgery centers, home health care, long-term care centers, and others. Hospitals & clinics are projected to constitute a prominent market share, while home health care is estimated to witness a major CAGR during the forecast period.
Geographically, North America is likely to account for a major share in the global rehabilitation equipment market during the forecast period. The rising preference for an independent lifestyle, the elderly and physically challenged individuals’ need to explore the world, increased longevity, and the staggering cost of caregiver services have fuelled the demand for mobility devices globally, apart from increased government support and reimbursement facilities. Moreover, recent industry estimates suggest that over 1,60,000 people in the U.S. use electric wheelchairs and scooters.
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Key players operating in the global market include Amigo Mobility International, Inc., Argo Medical, Access Rehabilitation Group, GF HEALTH PRODUCTS, INC., Stryker Corporation, Medline Industries, Inc., Invacare Corporation, Dynatronics Corporation, Drive DeVilbiss Healthcare, and Caremax Rehabilitation Equipment Co. Ltd.
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