Prenatal Care Market Size Anticipated to Touch a CAGR of 2.1% During the Forecast Period.
Prenatal care, also known as antenatal care, is a form of preventive health care that allows the physicians to monitor and prevent potential health problems during pregnancy. The WHO recommends that pregnant women should receive four prenatal visits to hospitals to treat problems and receive immunizations. The prenatal market is majorly driven by the growing perinatal morbidity rate, increasing awareness regarding prenatal care, rising expenditure power, and surging prevalence of miscarriages across the globe. Apart from this, the proliferation of distribution channels, such as supermarkets, retail stores, online stores, and pharmacies, is boosting the demand for maternity products, which in turn is driving the market growth.
In the last few years, women have started taking prenatal care at a gestational age of fewer than 12 weeks. Early prenatal care enables health professionals to deliver care and support and provide helpful information throughout the course of the pregnancy. As per the WHO, between 1990 and 2013, the early prenatal care visits increased by 43% across the globe.
On 7th November 2016, the WHO introduced a new series of recommendations to improve the quality of prenatal care and avoid any pregnancy-related complications. The new prenatal model is focused on increasing the maternal and fetal evaluations to diagnose problems, improve communication between healthcare providers and pregnant women, and increase successful pregnancy outcomes. As per the WHO, in 2013, around 2.7 million (45%) of the children from newborn to age 5 died due to pregnancy-related complications across the globe. Additionally, the WHO states that around 2.6 million babies die in the last 3 months of pregnancy and during childbirth every year. To address the situation, in 2014, the WHO, UNICEF, and UNFPA launched a global ENAP program, which is a roadmap of strategic actions for preventing perinatal morbidity. The ENAP plan was designed based on the evidence presented in the Lancet Every Newborn Series and was developed within Every Women Every Child Framework.
The global prenatal equipment market is segmented into ultrasound and ultrasonography devices, fetal dopplers, fetal monitors, and fetal magnetic resonance imaging.
The fetal doppler segment is expected to witness significant growth during the forecast period due to its rapid adoption over conventional tools, novels, and creative home care items in the market. It offers innovative features and is easy to use and usability, which is why, it is extensively used to detect the fetal heartbeat for prenatal care.
The prenatal supplement segment is dominating the market. It is further trifurcated into minerals, vitamins, and essential fatty acids. The vitamin segment is grabbing the highest shares in the market as it plays an important role in the development of the fetuses' nervous system and aids in delivering healthy babies. Today, nearly all obstetricians in the U.S. prescribe prenatal vitamins to pregnant women to promote healthy development and reduce birth defects.
The prenatal product type is segmented into body restructuring gels, stressed legs products, stretch marks minimizers, dark spots treatment creams, and skin toning lotions.
The stretch marks minimizing segment is grabbing the largest shares in the market and will continue the same during the forecast period. Stretch mark is one of the most prevalent problems among pregnant women. As per the Drug Store News, in 2013, around 33% of the women reported that their self-confidence was adversely affected due to stretch marks, and around 47% of women tried to hide the stretch mark, which is further boosting the segment growth as it aids in minimizing the stretch marks by increasing the production of collagen fibers to enhance the elasticity of the skin.
Based on distribution channel, the prenatal care market has been segmented into online pharmacies, supermarkets, hospital pharmacies, and drug stores.
The supermarket segment grabbed about 66.9% of the market share in 2018. Whereas, the online pharmacies segment is projected to grow at a CAGR of 4.83% during the forecast period. This can be attributed to the rising number of internet users, 24/7 availability, and discounts. For instance, Asos offers a range of fashionable and affordable maternity clothing and deals at lower prices. It also offers luxury brands, such as Mamalicious and New Look Maternity.
South Africa is Gaining Momentum in the Prenatal Care Market
South Africa is gaining momentum in the prenatal care market and will continue the same during the forecast period. The prevalence of non-pregnancy related infections, especially pneumonia and tuberculosis, among the HIV infected pregnant women is relatively high. To address the situation, in September 2016, a new HIV program was implemented by the WHO for the treatment of every HIV positive person in South Africa. In addition to this, free anti-retroviral HIV care has been made available for pregnant women to reduce the maternal and perinatal morbidity rates in the region. Similarly, the Basic Antenatal Care (ANC) program was launched to reduce perinatal morbidity and improve maternal health. The approach is considered as one of the top priorities for reducing maternal and child mortality in the country. It was adopted from the Focused Antenatal Care (FANC) model designed by the WHO.
Europe is second in the prenatal care market on account of the rapid technological advancements, ease of accessibility to the customers, rising expenditure power, increasing healthcare expenditure, and surging perinatal morbidity rate. The perinatal mortality ratio differs significantly between countries. The ratio stands at around 35% higher in some of the countries in the European Region. However, the perinatal mortality rate decreased from 9.5 per 1000 live births in 2000 to 7.4 in 2013. As per the WHO, in the U.K, around 3,286 stillbirths and 1,436 neonatal deaths in babies born at 24 weeks or greater were recorded in 2013. Recently, the Noninvasive Prenatal Testing (NIPT) was introduced in the region to address the situation of perinatal morbidity, miscarriage, and hospital admission for bleeding or leakage of amniotic fluid.
North America is dominating the prenatal care market. The region is backed with the presence of leading market contributing countries, such as the U.S., Canada, and Mexico. The U.S. is leading the regional market on account of the rapidly increasing healthcare expenditure, technological advancements, rising perinatal morbidity, and surging expenditure power. As per the WHO, in 2012, the U.S. ranked 27th and 46th in the world for infant and maternal mortality, respectively. As per the CDC, the U.S. perinatal mortality rate is unchanged from 2014 to 2016, which is around 6 perinatal deaths per 1,000 births. In 2013, the maternal deaths varied around 28 per 1000 births, the WHO.
In Canada, the Ministry of Health departments, named Healthy Development and Women’s Health, collaborated with the regional health authorities to develop Perinatal Services BC. It provides leadership, support, and coordination for the strategic planning of perinatal services across the country with a team of healthcare professionals, public health nurses, health planners, and administrators from both rural and urban areas.
Asia Pacific is the fastest-growing market for prenatal care. The region has the presence of India, China, and Japan with relatively high prenatal morbidity rates. As per the NCBI, in China, the perinatal mortality rate was about 69 per 1000 births, stillbirth was 24 per 1000 births, and the early neonatal mortality rate was around 46 per 1000 live births. To address the situation, the Chinese government is actively working to provide training to the health professionals, installing advanced equipment, and increasing staff. The government is also providing antenatal services in towns and urban areas, which is further boosting the market growth.
India is witnessing remarkable growth in the prenatal care market. The country is offering efficient maternal health services and supplies to the healthcare facilities, which has tripled from 18% in 2005 to 52% in 2016, the WHO. As per the IOSR Journal, in India, the perinatal mortality rate is around 16 per 1000 births in urban areas and 28 per 1000 births in rural areas. To attend to the situation, the WHO is offering technical and operational support across the country.
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On 17th January 2020: Philips collaborated with the UN Population Fund and the Government of the Republic of the Congo to reduce complications associated with maternal and newborn mortality. The main objective of the program is to manage high-risk pregnancies and complications associated with healthcare facilities by training the midwives and enabling timely prevention intervention during complications related to pregnancy and childbirth.
On 26th September 2018: GE Healthcare launched a new maternal & newborn health initiative. The initiative helps to mobilize around 7,000 expectant mothers to receive their first ultrasound screening during the course of pregnancy. As part of the program, 12 nurses and clinical officers each provided over 70 hours of training on the use of GE Healthcare's portable handheld ultrasound device to help primary health care staff predict gestational age and conduct tests that may lead to early detection of potentially life-threatening pregnancy complications. In addition, GE Healthcare will provide advisory support for monitoring and evaluation (M&E).