In the past 20 years or so, manufacturers have been able to reduce waste and variability in their production processes and dramatically improve product quality and yield (the amount of output per unit of input) by implementing lean and Six Sigma programs.However, in certain processing environments—pharmaceuticals, chemicals, and mining, for instance—extreme variability is a fact of life, sometimes even after lean techniques have been applied.
The ongoing transformation of the Chinese semiconductor sector requires all parties to raise their game.
The medical device industry is no stranger to costly recalls with serious impact on a company’s stock price, bottom line, and most importantly their reputation.
In 2010, Baxter was ordered by FDA to recall AND destroy all Colleague volumetric infusion pumps that had been sold in the market.
Bob Dylan sang the song, The Times They Are A-Changin’, which was a ballad about how everything is changing. And the times have changed quite a bit since he recorded that song. Back in the 1960’s when he first sang the song, people were just getting accustomed to TV and to the fact that the world was big and we weren’t the only people in it. Now, 50 years later globalization has caused our world to change again.
It’s a demographic sweet spot of enormous potential. With the developed world (Japan, Europe and to a lesser extent, the US) getting older, and emerging markets getting both bigger and richer, the market for things that make consumers healthier is set to expand. And it is already a very big deal (see chart).
The adoption of IT in healthcare systems has, in general, followed the same pattern as other industries. In the 1950s, when institutions began using new technology to automate highly standardized and repetitive tasks such as accounting and payroll, healthcare payors and other industry stakeholders also began using IT to process vast amounts of statistical data.