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Reimbursement Cuts Will Challenge Japanese Interventional Cardiology Device Market
Date:4/3/2013

TORONTO, April 3, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- According to Millennium Research Group (MRG), the global authority on medical technology market intelligence, prices of interventional cardiology devices in Japan will see significant declines through 2021. The Japanese Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare (MHLW) is implementing reimbursement cuts every two years in an effort to align Japanese medtech prices with the global market. As a result, most devices, including new products on the market, will see total revenue loss despite increases in use.

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The Japanese interventional cardiology device market has seen many recent product launches, particularly stents, and a number of next-generation devices are set to launch over the next ten years. Although bioresorbable vascular scaffolds (BVS) and next-generation drug-eluting stents (DES) are premium devices and will see strong adoption upon entry to the market, the reimbursement cuts will limit prices and impede profits for these products as well.

"The effects of MHLW reimbursement won't be entirely negative," said MRG Analyst Louise Murphy . "Reimbursement coverage by device will encourage physicians to adopt premium devices over standard devices. Despite the biennial cuts, premium devices will maintain higher prices and better reimbursement rates than standard devices, such as bare-metal stents (BMS), and will allow manufacturers to somewhat offset aggregate price declines."

In addition, MHLW coverage of fractional flow reserve (FFR) guidewires was recently expanded to include use in diagnostic procedures, and this offers a huge growth opportunity. Because physicians are reimbursed by device rather than procedure, this expansion has removed barriers to adoption of FFR as a decision
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SOURCE Millennium Research Group
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