COVID-19 Impact on Emergency Medical Services (EMS) in Healthcare Industry

COVID-19 Impact on Emergency Medical Services (EMS) in Healthcare Industry

  • Healthcare
  • Nov 30, 2020

COVID-19 Impact on Emergency Medical Services (EMS) in Healthcare Industry

INTRODUCTION

Current outbreak of Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) caused by Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2) has posed a severe danger to community and has a major impact on the economy, GDP and business worldwide. The WHO has announced COVID-19 a pandemic having high transmission rate that affects many lives. The interaction of Spike-S protein in SARS-CoV-2 with Ace-2 receptor present in human lungs is the primary reason for this high transmissibility. This is the main reason or greatest challenge in healthcare market, also a biggest challenge for healthcare providers in the year 2020. In December 2019, Chinese health officials informed WHO about amid serious condition when a cluster of 40 patients with pneumonia such as symptoms, most of them are connected to Huanan Sea-food market. Looking towards the current condition it is not the China who is suffering from global loss of any market, since the number of cases graph in China is stabilized.

It is the countries such as the U.S., India, Brazil, Russia and many more countries across the globe who are facing the loss in many market and a decline in GDP. After the declaration of pandemic many countries goes into the complete lockdown state including China, India, the U.S., Russia, Germany, among others. In order to decrease the spread of COVID-19 some countries such as China, New Zealand and South Korea succeed because of their strict laws and increased number of testing, Chinese company Baidus have initiated heat mapping from which testing became easier and helps in stabilization of graph, but the majority of the other countries including India & the U.S. have been drastically failed and hence are these were having much higher number of cases. Because of the contagion nature of COVID-19 the demand for Emergency Medical Services such as, Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), Endotracheal tube (ET), EEG (Electroencephalograph), Pulse Oximeter, TCD, Disinfectants, life support has increased also the patient handling systems including wheel chairs, medical beds and others their demand has also been increased rapidly. According to the weekly epidemiology report of 23 October 2020 by WHO stated 41.5 million cases of Coronavirus has been reported globally and 1,134,940 patients are dead due to the Coronavirus. The outbreak of COVID-19 is having a huge impact on the healthcare industry majorly the Emergency medical services.

IMPACT ON DEMAND

Emergency medical service (EMS) products market is expected to gain market growth, and not just because of COVID-19, although the impact of COVID-19 has vastly incremented the growth of EMS market globally, but the demand for EMS was also higher in the period of 2015-2020. COVID-19 pandemic lifted the EMS market further more to the top sector in market. Even before the pandemic the need for patient monitoring systems and wound care consumables is higher but because of pandemic the need/demand for patient handling equipment is drastically increased. PPE kits, number of beds in each and every country their demand is increased. Trauma care, Cardiac care and most importantly respiratory care product demand are greatly increased due to pandemic and their demand will further raised until the vaccine for COVID-19 is introduced. Rising healthcare spending and the number of hospitals, on the other hand, will further fuel multiple opportunities that will contribute to the development of the demand for emergency medical services (EMS) products. Some companies are launching new products to increase their revenue by meeting the emergent need.

For instance,

  • Royal Philips announced in July 2020 the introduction of its Tempus ALS (remote monitoring and defibrillator solution) for pre-hospital settings in the U.S. The approach is a full end-to-end framework that incorporates revolutionary technology with sophisticated technologies to extend the first responders' pre-hospital continuum of treatment.

Also, the increasing elderly population and growing rate of prevalence of various chronic diseases which need more than usual emergency healthcare services are some of the chief factors driving the growth of EMS products market.

Globally the surge in the demand of EMS medical product are observed due to the infectious nature of COVID-19 which could be spread via touch, mucous droplets, use of clothes, among other. In order to prevent the spread of this pandemic worldwide lockdown was imposed by several countries but since most of them are failed in this attempt and people are losing jobs countries have to lift-up the lockdown, this again brings people in contact with each other and risks their life. Moreover, as the effect of this virus is prominent on the respiratory tract, the number of patients with airways difficulties has significantly increased leading to growing demand for disposable NG tubes and tracheostomy tubes, general public is again in the need of EMS, hospital beds, ventilators, respiratory care, EG tubes, ECG machines.

IMPACT ON SUPPLY

Due to COVID-19 most of the market supply has been disrupted. Lockdown imposed by many countries is the major reason that imports and exports for many market has been slackened.

The WHO has warned that extreme and rising damage to the global supply of personal protective equipment (PPE) is placing lives at risk from the current COVID-19 and other infectious diseases; triggered by the demand, panic purchasing, hand violence. In order to prevent themselves and their patients from getting contaminated and infecting others, healthcare professionals rely on personal protective equipment. Yet, owing to insufficient access to materials such as pads, surgical masks, respirators, helmets, face filters and aprons, shortages leave physicians , nurses and other frontline staff critically ill-equipped to care for COVID-19 patients.

“Without secure supply chains, the risk to healthcare workers around the world is real. Industry and governments must act quickly to boost supply, ease export restrictions and put measures in place to stop speculation and hoarding. We can’t stop COVID-19 without protecting health workers first,” said WHO Director-General Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus.

KEY INITIATIVES BY MARKET PLAYERS DURING COVID-19

Various organizations are taking initiatives to create awareness and to make ambulance services available in developing countries.

For instance,

  • Ambulancezorg Nederland is one of the Dutch state ambulance service organizations. It provides assistance to the country's Regional Ambulance Services (RAVs).

In addition, in developing and industrialized countries, the number of air ambulance services has grown due to the recent outbreak of COVID-19. These ambulances are prepared with defined medical equipment that allows the transport of wounded or sick patients safely and easily over remote areas or long distances. In addition, along with patient-specific flight medicine, it has trained medical practitioners, tracking roles and medical equipment that effectively contribute to business development.

For instance,

  • IIT Madras-incubated start-up builds a portable hospital unit to treat patients with viruses: A start-up from the Indian Institute of Technology, Madras, has established a portable hospital unit. With the support of four persons, this portable hospital can be built anywhere within only two hours. The name of the portable ambulance unit built by Modulus Housing is 'MediCAB'.

CONCLUSION

COVID-19 virus is likely to leave a long-lasting impact on each market sector. The pandemic of COVID-19 prompted citizens to deal with confusion regarding the virus and its controlling. The virus poses risk not just to human life but has also produced economic distress and severe emotional strain, people are losing their jobs, each and every sector has been suffering which creates turmoil in everyone minds. It is now fashioned to wear masks and gloves due COVID-19 a new system of hygiene is developed worldwide. Though it cannot be said that EMS are not needed earlier. However, the highly contagious nature of virus and its ease of spread via droplets or even fomites to be known to some extent, the demand of Emergency medical services increases rapidly.

 

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