COVID-19 Impact on Bioresorbable Scaffolds in Healthcare Industry
Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), also known as SARS-CoV-2 or 2019-nCoV, is a human infectious disease caused by the coronavirus that causes severe acute respiratory syndrome. COVID-19 was declared a pandemic by the world health organization due to the rapid rise in human infection rates. This pandemic has influenced the whole planet with its major impacts on the economy and businesses across the globe. The virus has spread across all regions ranging from North America, Europe, Asia-Pacific, Middle East, and Africa up to South America. After the pandemic declaration, various countries such as Russia, Europe, and Asia announced the complete lockdown to decrease its spread. During this pandemic of COVID-19 the rising prevalence of cardiovascular diseases and accompanied surgery adoptions is accelerating the market growth. Amid this pandemic the demand for bioresorbable scaffolds is increasing as they provide complete resorption and temporal mechanical support for patients. According, to the situation report of 20 July 2021, by WHO, 190 million cases of coronavirus patients have been reported globally, and 4.08 million patients are dead due to the coronavirus. America is leading in cumulative cases with a record of 74 million and 1.9 million death rates. More than 4.21 billion doses of Covid-19 vaccines have been administered in around 180 countries. The outbreak of COVID-19 is having a huge impact on the healthcare and supply chain of various medical products, including Bioresorbable scaffolds.
Bioresorbable scaffolds are widely used as potential solution for coronary artery diseases. These scaffolds prevent the adverse reactions caused by permanent metallic devices during percutaneous coronary intervention, which is safe, effective, and timely preferred treatment for coronary artery diseases. Usually, permanent metallic devices prevent the natural process of vessel restoration and remodeling, which makes future revascularization more complicated. Hence, bioresorbable scaffolds are preferred to prevent these complications since they can provide temporary support and then degrade for natural restoration to take over in vessels.
The COVID 19 had a devastating impact on the global economy. The several establishments had to remain shut while others scaled down the operations or put hold on expansion plans as they tried to survive the unprecedented crisis. However, the rising cardiovascular cases increased the demand for vascular restoration surgeries. In spite of lockdowns and supply disruption crisis during this pandemic, the companies managed and are still managing online sales for many medical scaffolds and their products. They are also maintaining fair prices due to the high demand of these products in the market, but due to the supply chain disruption, the prices have raised slightly.
· As per a survey done in five U.S Hospitals, the price of scaffold Bioresorbable stents was estimated to be 1, 250 USD per stent. And Abbott sells Bioresorbable Vascular Scaffolds BVS for USD 1,743 and Everolimus-Eluting Bioresorbable Scaffolds EES for USD 1,638
The COVID-19 impact has not affected the price of scaffolds and based products at a high level because of advanced online sales and innovative delivery options available with utmost safety concerns to major coronary surgeries conducted in hospitals.
Impact on Demand
The COVID-19 pandemic has impacted the bioresorbable scaffolds market from its niche pedestal to the mainstream sector. Even before the pandemic, the bioresorbable scaffolds were in high demand due to rising chronic coronary artery diseases and advanced methods for treatments of these diseases like vascular restorations globally.
· As per the American College of Cardiology in 2018, the use of stent scaffolds in cardio surgeries started back in mid-1980s. But due to many adverse reactions of metallic scaffolds, which resist the natural vascularization process in arteries, researchers showed wide interest in bioresorbable scaffolds
The rising transmission rate of coronavirus in the recent scenario has made high hospital admissions for various chronic diseases and respective demand for surgical scaffolds. The most widely used bioresorbable scaffold is ‘Absorb BVS’, made of PLLA scaffold coated with Everolimus-Eluting PDLLA. This is 150 micron size which can reabsorb for 4 years altogether. Coronary artery disease is major heart disease that affects both men and women irrespective of age globally.
· According to the Center for Disease Control CDC; coronary heart disease has been estimated to be around 18.2 million in adults aged 20 and above. In 2017, the mortality rate was 365,914 due to coronary artery diseases. About 2 out of 10 individuals are killed due to the disorder in adults who are less than 65 years of age.
This increases the demand for surgeries and vascular restoration for the timely treatment of most coronary disease conditions. Several companies operating in other domains are eager to enter, and some have already entered the landscape of bioresorbable scaffold market to increase their revenue by meeting the emergent need of various hospitals for coronary artery surgeries. The demand is further rising in local clinics and small laboratories due to high awareness of the disease and their advancements in surgical procedures.
Impact on Supply Chain
The COVID-19 has created a great impact on the supply chain of bioresorbable scaffolds. The sudden attack of COVID-19 and its subsequent impact on restrictions on trade and movement of goods has resulted in a shutdown of vast countries globally, resulting in disrupted supply chains due to limited raw materials and workforce, and slow down or stopping of manufacturing. Moreover, several manufacturing companies are retooling priority manufacturing to produce other essential medical supplies and equipment such as ventilators. But considering the need of these scaffolds in coronary heart diseases surgery and an increase in order from the consumers, the government allows the movements of transport vehicles to import and export the medical and surgical scaffold or implants products which is highly required by hospitals and other healthcare sectors. Additionally, the manufacturers are also taking crucial steps to ensure the availability of raw materials and look into the quality of products.
Manufacturers need to take necessary steps about production processes, shifting to other facilities if required, changes in quality assurance, costs and procedures related to screening of workforce and offering care if needed, changes in working hours, and others in order to maintain their supply chain.
To minimize supply chain crises, the government has been firmly monitoring the supply chain to assume that the COVID-19 outbreak may adversely impact the supply chain of medical products, including shortages of bioresorbable scaffolds for various surgical purposes to coronary healthcare sectors in countries globally or potential disruptions in supply chains.
To manage such a crucial situation, many organizations are looking forward to improving and diversifying the supply chain model in all aspects. The resulting COVID-19 pandemic has shown the various ways for supply chain management, which may be effective by innovative solutions initiated by market players.
STRATEGIC DECISIONS OF GOVERNMENT AND MANUFACTURERS
The key players engaged in the global bioresorbable scaffolds market are making improvements to keep the speed during COVID-19. They are cautiously taking every single step so the development can be expanded on a consistent schedule for the market. Organizations working in the bioresorbable scaffolds market embrace a few systems, including joint effort, arrangements, association, and market development to improve their business.
· On September 3, 2020, Abbott, the primary key player in the bioresorbable scaffolds market, announced that they had initiated a LIFE-BTK clinical trial for evaluating the effectiveness of Esprit BTK Everolimus Eluting Resorbable Scaffold, which was used for people battling with late stages of peripheral artery disease (PAD).
Even during the pandemic, the company is making many initiatives to resume their products manufacturing and trial over the market to strengthen their position.
The impact of the novel COVID-19 virus is expected to leave a long-lasting impact on each healthcare sector. The virus poses a risk to human life and has caused economic distress and severe emotional strain. It produced a ripple effect that gave rise to a new collection of requirements and needs that were not much needed earlier. The most essential one being the bioresorbable scaffolds and medicinal products, which are highly needed in hospitals, clinics, laboratories due to rising chronic cardiovascular and coronary artery diseases and surgical emergence globally.
It is estimated that the COVID-19 pandemic has a negative impact on the market's growth due to the surgery cases of coronary diseases being halted unless emergence. The current priority in most hospitals is given for COVID-19 treatments as the surge of COVID-19 cases keeps increasing each day.
Moreover, many International governments, including U.S, Europe and Asia’s healthcare organizations, have supported the supply of these scaffold products due to high priority in this crucial health crisis period. Many government bodies and significant market players are closely associated with patients and pharma industries for safe packaging of products considering contagious nature of the virus and improvement of future economics.