The Top 5 States for Medical Devices Employment

5 - 6 mins Minutes

The future of the Medical Devices market is bright. Over the last 12 months the global Med D...

By Georgina Collings

Digital Marketing Manager

The future of the Medical Devices market is bright. Over the last 12 months the global Med Dev/Tech industry has grown by 10% and it isn’t likely to slow down. In fact, according to EvaluateMedTech, the global medical device market is expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate of 4.5% from 2018 to 2023. So, by 2023, the global market will be worth over $400 billion.

Fuelled by innovation, investment, an ageing population and increasing healthcare expenditure, the United States will spearhead this growth (followed closely by Europe, the second largest market for Medical Device innovation).

Here at Meet, we have experienced the progression and growth of the industry first-hand. Just over a year ago, our own Medical Devices team was half the size it is today. Back then the majority of the team were based in our London office, working in the lucrative European Market, and our US division focused solely on the West Coast.

However, as the industry has expanded, Meet’s Medical Devices team has become one of our fastest growing divisions and the brand has experience significant growth in the US Market. Meet now has dedicated teams strategically placed in San Francisco and Chicago - tapping into two of the largest Med Tech spaces in the US.

But what is it that makes those areas Medical Devices hubs? And where else in the US is the industry growing? Here are the top States for the Medical Devices market, according to Harvard Business School’s ‘US Cluster Mapping’.


1. California

Employment: 45,347

California employs more than double the number of Medical Device professionals than any other State. Yet, when you think of California, are Medical Devices the first kind of technology that springs to mind? Probably not.

Nevertheless, its reputation for innovation and the entrepreneurial focus of the region attracts top talent. Additionally, as the Med Tech industry evolves, there is a synergy between the type of technology Silicon Valley is famous for and the increasingly sophisticated Medical Devices that incorporate this tech. Which means, more and more, we find overlapping skill sets required in both the Technology and Life Sciences industries. Combined with the fact it has the largest concentration of venture capital in the country; is it a surprise that it’s the top State for Medical Device employment? 

Across the State the there are multiple Medical Device hubs; Orange County, Los Angeles, San Diego and the Bay Area, which is home to our West Coast Medical Devices team. Where we have seen the most extensive growth in the last year. From just our Division Director to a team of 6.


2. Indiana

Employment: 16,840

Meet’s second U.S. Medical Devices team is based in our Chicago office, obviously Chicago isn’t in Indiana, but, bordering this Medical Devices hub put the team in a great position to establish a presence in the sector. Although originally the team were focused on breaking into the pharma and bio tech market, they quickly saw the potential the Medical Devices space in the Mid-West had to offer. The opportunity was too good to miss and expanding into this arena has fuelled the growth of the Chicago team.

What about Indiana makes it a nationally recognised leader in the sector? Firstly, companies benefit from low taxes and operating costs; as one of the State’s most valuable industries, the booming Medical Devices market has economic benefits that impact suppliers and manufacturers alike. Plus, because the Medical Devices industry in Indiana is well distributed across the State there isn’t just a singular area reaping the rewards!  

And it’s diverse! Although Indiana has forged a reputation as the orthopaedic capital of the world, there are a variety of specialisms across the State including; cardiovascular, diagnostic and urological devices.


3. Florida

Employment: 14,049

Florida is the third largest employer of Medical Device professionals in the US. Similarly, to California and Indiana, Florida’s industry is State-wide. Having said that, the majority of companies are located either in the Jacksonville area, South Florida or along I-4 Corridor.

Historically, Florida has been a hub for Medical Device manufacturers. Interestingly, in recent years Tampa, on the I-4 corridor, has taken centre stage a major manufacturing hub. With 1/3 of the State’s overall Medical Device manufacturing companies located in the Tampa Bay area.

Florida also benefits from the most favourable tax structure in the country, creating a business-friendly environment that drives investment and ensures that the State continues to attract and retain Medical Device companies. Additionally, with one of the most extensive transportation systems in the world and its strategic geographic location it’s attractive for foreign trade.

Generally, regions with a strong Medical Device market have equally large, or larger clusters of biotech and pharmaceutical companies. But, Florida’s Medical Devices space actually contributes to a higher percentage of the State’s medical commodities, around 60%.


4. Minnesota

Employment: 13,869

The Medical Device industry has a long history in Minnesota, it’s roots stem back to the 1950s, when the founder of Medtronic, Earl Bakken, invented the world’s first portable battery-powered pacemaker. Medtronic still have a huge presence in the State, even though their HQ is now based in Dublin. To this day Minnesota remains a hub of innovation within the Medical Devices industry, backed by a strong infrastructure of suppliers; it’s no wonder Medtronic have maintained operations there for so long.

Where Minnesota really stands out within the Medical Devices industry is in FDA approvals; some of the most life-changing and heavily regulated devices in the world are created there. It’s the top of the list when it comes to Premarket applications. In fact, over the last 50 years 1/3 of all successful PMAs came from Minnesota. Astonishing considering that California’s Medical Device market is 3 times bigger! Alas, Minnesota lacks the investment that benefits California’s industry and can’t compete with the sheer size of the State.


5. New York

Employment: 12,461

Both New York and Massachusetts compete for the title of top Medical Device market on the East Coast. Even though Boston is one of the densest Medical Devices hubs in the country and widely regarded as more innovative, New York tops the list for employment figures.

Home to Meet’s first US office, the Life Sciences industry is well established in New York; the booming and diverse Pharmaceutical & Biotechnology market has been present for a long time. But, over the last couple of years the State has seen the Medical Device industry grow. Similarly, to California, the clustering of high-tech industries has fed the growth of the Medical Device space. As a younger player in the industry, can New York look forward to accelerated growth and replicate the success in California? 


Sources: 24X7 Industry News, 2019; Harvard business School Cluster Mapping, 2018; Medical Device and Diagnostic Industry, QMED, 2014; San Francisco Business Times, 2018. 

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