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Ireland – Overview of medical device industry and healthcare statistics

Below you will find basic demographic and economic data for Ireland, plus specific information about the country's medical device and healthcare industries.

Irish medical device industry: Although Ireland's economy is strong compared to its European neighbors, the medical device market will grow modestly over the next few years. The Irish market was valued at US $.72 billion in 2016, and will increase to $.83 billion by 2020.

The medical device manufacturing industry in Ireland is robust. In fact, many of the top medical device companies have operations in Ireland. However, the domestic manufacturing industry is based on exports; Ireland is one of the top medical device exporters in Europe.

Opportunities in the Irish market: Irish authorities are interested in opportunities to control costs through increased competition, and improving efficiency in the healthcare system. As such, the Irish healthcare industry is very price sensitive, and manufacturers who can compete on price will perform the best. Devices that improve health outcomes with fewer resources are also well-received. General medicine, diagnostic, hygiene, assisted-living and homecare products, and bio-medical products are currently in highest demand.

Industry challenges in Ireland: Ireland's opportunity for some medical device manufacturers will prove to be challenges for others. In some cases, the need for immediate cost savings will outweigh the long-term benefits of some products. As a result, manufacturers who cannot compete on pricing may find the market is unprofitable. Manufacturers can also expect hefty competition from large, international companies operating in Ireland. Many global medical device companies are well established in Ireland.

How Ireland compares to other markets

  IRELAND SWITZERLAND GERMANY
Population 4,952,473 8,121,830 80,854,408
Primary language(s) English German German
Total healthcare spending $21 billion $78.6 billion $437 billion
Healthcare expenditures total (% of GDP) 7.8% 11.7% 11.3%
Healthcare expenditures per capita $4239 (USD) $9674 (USD) $5411 (USD)
Expenditures on healthcare Government: 66%
Private: 34%
Government: 66%
Private: 34%
Government: 77%
Private: 23%
Size of medical device market (USD) $0.71 billion (USD – 2015) $3.5 billion (USD – 2014) $26 billion (USD – 2014)
Number of hospital beds 2.9 per 1000 people 5 per 1000 people 8.2 per 1000 people
Age distribution 0-14 years: 21%
15-64 years: 66%
65 years and over: 13% (2015 est.)
0-14 years: 15%
15-64 years: 67%
65 years and over: 18% (2015 est.)
0-14 years: 13%
15-64 years: 66%
65 years and over: 21% (2015 est.)
Life expectancy at birth Male: 78 years
Female: 83 years
Male: 80 years
Female: 85 years
Male: 78 years
Female: 83 years
Currency Euro (€) Swiss franc Euro (€)

Want to see how Ireland compares to many other countries in Europe and around the world? Download our free PDF Healthcare spending by country.