Medical protective clothing is personal protective equipment, including garments that provide protection against blood, bodily fluids, and other harmful microorganisms that can transfer infectious diseases. It involves coveralls, surgical gowns, and isolation gowns. They are usually difficult to wear, can be uncomfortable but reduce chances of contamination. According to studies evaluating different types of personal protective equipment (PPE), gowns with gloves attached at the cuff, and modified gowns that are tighter at the neck, can offer protection for people at health risks.
Medical protective clothing plays a significant role in offering adequate protection to medical professionals. These clothing have applications in different working environments that can be hazardous for legs or feet which include chemical spillage, falling object, dampness, abrasive materials, among others. The use of chemical and oil resistant soles on footwear, safety shoes with steel toe caps, gaiters, and leggings are increasingly adopted for protection. Various beneficial properties, such as high durability, non-inflammability, excellent dimensional stability, and high mechanical strength are anticipated to augment market growth in various hazardous work fields.
Factors such as rise in safety concerns for front-line workers in healthcare, growing demand for high-quality patient care, growth in COVID-19 cases, and rise in the number of surgeries globally, are driving the market growth for medical protective clothing treatment. However, high investments in R&D activities and the high cost of quality medical protective clothing are expected to restrain the market growth during the forecast period.
The global medical protective clothing market was estimated at USD 398.3 million in 2019 and is expected to grow at a 7.8% CAGR during the forecast period.
The novel coronavirus (COVID-19) has been declared as a public emergency by the World Health Organization (WHO). The pandemic has triggered disruption in healthcare facilities all over the world, with hospitals becoming overrun due to the growing surge of patients. As per Worldometer.info, 3,543,646 coronavirus cases were reported as of January 22, 2021, in the U.K. alone. Furthermore, there have been 95,612,831 confirmed cases of COVID-19 and 2,066,176 deaths reported globally, as per statistics revealed by the WHO Health Emergency Dashboard.
Medical protective clothing offers protection to front-line workers, including healthcare professionals while treating COVID-19patients. It acts as a barrier against contaminated objects/surfaces; patients cough droplets, sneezes, and other body fluids. The availability of a wide range of medical clothing that is satisfying the need of doctors, nurses, and other medical staff involved in patient care contributes to the rise in product demand. Additionally, various government initiatives and funding across the world support production of personal protective equipment including medical clothing to meet the demand-supply gap. Thus, the growing cases of COVID-19 have surged the demand for protective clothing and are expected to contribute to market growth during the forecast period.
Increasing demand for better quality patient care and safety while performing surgeries is expected to drive the demand for medical protective clothing. Surgical gowns offer surgeons better protection and reduce the risk of contamination during surgery. A rise in the number of surgeries across the world is expected to drive overall market growth.
According to Spine Review, in the U.S., surgeons perform around 1.62 million instrumented spinal procedures each year. Each year around 432,000 spinal fusions are performed in the U.S. as per the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons (AAOS) study. Also, more than 790,000 knee replacements are performed each year in the country, according to data reported by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality.
According to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons data, more than 17.7 million surgical and minimally invasive cosmetic procedures were conducted in the United States in the year 2018. It also reported that the U.S. spent more than USD 16.6 billion on cosmetic plastic surgery. Thus, a growing healthcare expenditure coupled with the rising adoption of a number of invasive and non-invasive surgical procedures is expected to drive the market growth during the assessment period.
Based on product, the gown segment held the largest market share in 2019 and is anticipated to maintain its position during the forecast period. This can be attributed to rising cases of infection-transmitted diseases, such as COVID-19, the growing aging population, and the presence of stringent regulatory requirements regarding the safety of healthcare workers. The impermeable nature and fluid-resistive surgical and isolation gowns are anticipated to boost the demand.
The coveralls segment is anticipated to record the highest growth during the forecast period. This is due to its ability to offer 360° protection to front-line workers, including healthcare professionals. The compliance with international standards EN14126 and EN13795, and NFPA 1999 in the U.S., makes them of high-quality, is anticipated to augment the market growth.
Based on end-user, the hospital segment accounted for the largest share of the global medical protective clothing market in 2019. This can be attributed to the growing adoption of medical protective clothing in hospitals and other healthcare facilities, the rise in prevalence of chronic infectious diseases, and increasing awareness about appropriate protective clothing for protection against harmful microorganisms and related risks.
Home healthcare is anticipated to record the highest growth. The ability of home care facilities, to offer medical services to patients in the vicinity of their homes will aid the market growth during the forecast period.
The American market held a significant market share during the forecast period and is expected to grow at a high CAGR during the forecast period. Further, at the country-level, the U.S. is expected to generate high revenue. The strong regional market can be attributed to the rise in the number of surgeries in this region.
As per statistics revealed by the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons (AAOS), by 2030, about 3 million Total Knee Arthroplasty (TKA) surgeries are projected to be performed in the U.S. alone. The presence of prominent market players and strategies adopted by them is expected to enhance the regional market share. For instance, in September 2019, Dunlop Protective Footwear (USA) and Upstart Group (USA) entered into a collaboration to distribute protective footwear globally through the Amazon marketplace. The initiatives taken by the federal government, rise in demand for better patient care, and rise in cases of chronic infectious diseases including, COVID-19, are projected to drive the regional market growth.
The Asia-Pacific medical protective clothing market is expected to witness the highest CAGR during the forecast period owing to growing cases of infection-transmitted diseases such as COVID-19. For instance, Asia reached about 20,609,717 infections of the new coronavirus of the 83,135,180 global caseloads of coronavirus, according to statistics provided by worldmeters.info.
Honeywell International Inc., a leading market player, announced an investment of USD 100 million in 2016with the sole purpose of geographic expansion in Asia-Pacific with the launch of R&D facilities in Shanghai and other regional headquarters. Such growth strategies of market players to enhance the company network would garner regional market growth during the forecast period.
Moreover, a significant increase in the geriatric population susceptible to chronic health infections, implementation of stringent government regulation toward health and hygiene, presence of maximum hospitals and healthcare centers, and a rise in health awareness are also expected to propel the regional market growth.
The global medical protective clothing market is highly fragmented owing to the presence of several large and small players. Strategies implemented by top players in the industry include acquisitions, mergers, distribution deals, and new products to strengthen the portfolio of products and capture a larger market share.
Companies like DuPont, 3M, Ansell, Alpha Pro Tech Limited, and Lakeland Industries are increasing their production capacities to supply personal protective equipment including medical protective clothing owing to the surge of the COVID-19 pandemic.