Autoclaves are closed chambers used for sterilizing surgical equipment and other surgical instruments. Steam sterilization is a non-toxic and inexpensive way to eliminate microbes and spores. Steam sterilization is based on four parameters, which are steam, pressure, temperature, and time of exposure. The autoclave is generally used in laboratory for media preparation, pharmaceutical products, and regulated medical waste. Steam autoclaves works on two basic principles, based on which they are of two types – gravity displacement autoclave and high-speed prevacuum sterilizer. The global steam autoclave is majorly driven by increasing prevalence of hospital-acquired infectious diseases, technological advancement, and increasing number of hospital facilities, laboratories, etc.
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New product launches with advanced technology is expected to drive the steam autoclave market growth during the forecast period. For instance, in 2016, Astella Scientific launched a touch screen based controller for its autoclave ranges, combined with analogue and digital input/output modules. Controller software has features to improve speed and management of load cycles with menu system, cycle selection, customizable access levels, and password protection. Moreover, it stores historic data up to 5,000 cycles and can be viewed or downloaded via USB port. Manufacturers are also focusing on introducing high capacity steam autoclave at low prices, to sustain in the growing autoclave market.
Increasing prevalence of hospital-acquired infectious (HAIs) is expected to propel growth of the steam autoclave market. For instance, according to World Health Organization (WHO) factsheet, in developed countries 7 out of 100 hospitalized patients acquire one of the other healthcare associated infection, whereas, in emerging countries the ratio is 10 out of 100. Moreover, according to Center for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) annual National and State Healthcare-Associated Infections Progress Report (HAI Progress Report, 2014), the burden of HAIs in the U.S.
Moreover, increasing number of surgical procedures and increasing preference for minimally invasive surgical procedures is also expected to fuel growth of the steam autoclave market. According to a study presented by the Centers of Disease Control & Prevention (CDC) 2014, around 4.7 million people underwent total knee arthroplasty, while 2.5 million underwent total hip arthroplasty in the U.S. Rapidly increasing surgical waste and hazardous bio-medical waste is also expected to fuel the steam autoclave market growth. For instance, according to BioMedical Waste Solutions, LLC., hospitals in the U.S. produce over 5.9 million tons of waste, annually. Same source stated that hospital produce 33 lbs. of medical waste per day per staffed bed. Furthermore, governments of various countries are focusing on investing in proper disposal of medical waste and this is also expected to support growth of the steam autoclave market.
Growth of the steam autoclave market is expected to be hindered by increasing use of disposable products by healthcare settings and high cost of large capacity autoclaves used in pharmaceutical industries and research laboratories.
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Key players operating in the global steam autoclave market are Steelco S.P.A., Dental X spa, Tuttnauer Co. Ltd., BMM Weston Holdings Ltd., Getinge Infection Control AB, BMT Medical Technology s.r.o., Belimed AG, ERYIGIT A.S., and Hanshin Medical Co., Ltd. Mergers and acquisition are the key strategies employed by market players, to maintain their position in the competitive market. For instance, in 2017, Bondtech Corp., an autoclave manufacturer, and World Autoclave Solutions announced their merger, to bring an autoclave solution of any size for all industrial applications at an affordable price.
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